Today on Radioactivity, Rob Lorei speaks to retired LAPD Deputy Chief Stephen Downing about the military hardware that’s getting into the hands of police officers around the nation.
The Pentagon’s top spokesman said Tuesday that he defended the program under which the Defense Department has sent military equipment to police departments across the country, including Ferguson, Mo., where clashes between police and civilians have continued 10 days after a white police officer shot and killed an unarmed black man.
The Pentagon’s Excess Property Program, sometimes known as the 1033 Program, has supplied police departments across the country with more than $4.3 billion in gear since 1997, including $449 million in 2013
Stephen Downing began his twenty-year police career in a squad car and finished as a deputy chief of police. As Commander of the Bureau of Special Investigations at one point, the Administrative Narcotics Division was one of the divisions within his scope of authority.