March 30th, 2012

Among its fleet of helicopters, patrol cars, inmate buses and other vehicles, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department keeps four long-haul semitrailers ready to go at a moment’s notice. 

Their purpose: Travel the country retrieving discarded – and free of charge – U.S. military hand-me-downs for its deputies to use in California.

M16 rifles, helicopters, microwaves, survival kits, workout equipment, bayonet knives, ammunition cans and more – the LA sheriff’s office snaps up an average of $4 million to $5 million in surplus military equipment annually.

For example, in this photo Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Sgt. Bob Watkins shows one of five H-3 helicopters transferred from the military. It’s now used for search and rescue and SWAT transport. Read our full investigation.

  1. holden421 reblogged this from californiawatch
  2. californiawatch posted this
Loading tweets...

@CaliforniaWatch

California Watch, the largest investigative journalism team operating in the state, was launched in 2009 by the nonprofit, nonpartisan Center for Investigative Reporting. Areas of coverage include education, health and welfare, public safety, the environment and the influence of money on the political and regulatory process.

Networks