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Los Angeles Police Not Interested in Using Tanks, Heavy Munitions - Spokesman

© AP Photo / Nick UtLos Angeles police officers investigate a shooting in South Central Los Angles on Monday, Dec. 29, 2014
Los Angeles police officers investigate a shooting in South Central Los Angles on Monday, Dec. 29, 2014 - Sputnik International
The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) has no intention to increase the use of the US government's surplus military equipment and is not interested in using heavy equipment and munitions, LAPD Public Information Director Josh Rubenstein told Sputnik.

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WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — "The Los Angeles Police Department has no intention of increasing our military surplus footprint," Rubenstein said on Tuesday. "We are not interested, nor have we ever wanted to utilize grenade launchers, tanks, or heavy munitions in the policing of Los Angeles."

On Monday, President Donald Trump issued an executive order removing restrictions placed by former President Barack Obama in 2015 on local and state law enforcement to obtain equipment from the US government's military surplus’ 1033 program.

Rubenstein said the 1033 program is used by LAPD primarily to replace the aging surplus equipment it has used for many years, but added that the department remains compliant with Obama's 2015 executive order.

"The 1033 program does allow the Los Angeles Police Department the ability to replace aging equipment that we have owned for years and complies with the 2015 Presidential Executive Order," Rubenstein said. "Most of the equipment we have attained through the 1033 program consists of helmets, goggles, Ready to Eat Meals, etc."

The LAPD's most important asset is its community policing and ability to communicate effectively with the public and communities, Rubenstein said.

The Defense Department program, which began in 1990, has provided more than $5.4 billion in military gear and equipment to state and local police, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said earlier this week.

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