NYPD buying new helmets, vests following recent police murders in Baton Rouge, Dallas

Sandra Bookman Image
Monday, July 25, 2016
NYPD buying new helmets, vests following recent police murders
Sandra Bookman has the details.

NEW YORK (WABC) -- On Monday, Police Commissioner William Bratton touted the NYPD's new tactical protective equipment for patrol officer - more than $7 million worth of military-style helmets and bulletproof vests.

"Vests that would be capable of stopping rounds like we saw fired in Baton Rouge," said Commissioner Bratton.

Both the Commissioner and Mayor Bill de Blasio acknowledged that recently deadly attacks on police in Louisiana and Dallas greatly influenced the decision to purchase the new gear, as did the nightclub massacre in Orlando, where a helmet similar to the new equipment the NYPD will receive, saved an officer's life.

"We have to make sure we're taking every measure available to protect our officers with the latest gear and the latest technology," said Mayor deBlasio.

NYPD special units are already equipped with the upgraded protective gear, now, patrol officers, who are most likely to respond to active shooter situations will begin carrying the new equipment starting in September. There will be 20,000 helmets and 6,000 heavy-duty vests.

"This is the smart and right thing to do," added Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams.

While Adams himself, a former officer, praised the new acquisition of the new anti-terror equipment, the Police Union insists it doesn't go far enough. The PBA recently filed a complaint with the state Labor Department claiming NYPD brass were creating an unsafe workplace by depriving officers of the equipment needed to protect themselves.

"The ballistic vests and helmets in patrol cars can provide immediate protection for police officers, but without long rifles to counter the immediate threat of the shooter, the officers and the public they are sworn to protect will remain in great danger," PBA President Pat Lynch said.

Commissioner Bratton said there is not a police department that is