Governor's Grant Helps Buy Bullet Proof Vests

- CUMBERLAND, Md. – The Governor’s Office of Crime Control and Prevention gave $49,000 in grants to eight different police departments throughout the state of Maryland to help purchase to body armor.

The Cumberland Police Department is one of the eight law enforcement agencies to receive grant money.

Lieutenant with the Cumberland Police Department, Chuck Ternant, said the department applies for the grant each year and did not receive any for the last two years.

“But this year we received $2,700 in funding to help with the purchase of vests,” Ternant said.

In 2011, the Cumberland police received more than $6,000 and in 2012 nearly $2,500 in grant money.

"Every officer needs body armor to work on the street, to protects them against gun fire,” Ternant added.

Ternant said the Cumberland Police Department has to match-pay the $2,700 the state gave them but said it’s well worth the costs.

“The vests are important because they keep officers alive,” Ternant said.

Melanie and Marissa Karpinski come from a law enforcement family and said it’s a great feeling to know the state is helping police officers protect themselves.

“We've actually had a few friends who have been saved by their vests, one was a stabbing and a few were shooting incidents, so had they not had a vest they would not be with us," Melanie Karpinksi said.

"I think it's really important to protect our police officers, they're protecting us, so it's kind of like giving back a little bit,” Marissa Karpinksi said.

Ternant said the vests have a five-year life span, and with 52 officers each having their own they have to replace at least ten vests per year.

The bullet-proof vests are made specifically to fit each officer, with the fact they need to meet the National Institute of Justice bullet proof vests standards.

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