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Controversial SWAT Vehicle Purchase Temporarily Tabled

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Sonora, CA –The possible purchase of an armored military type vehicle for the Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Office has been postponed.

As previously reported, the Board of Supervisors were to vote at Tuesday’s meeting on whether to transfer $122,000 from asset forfeiture trust funds to allow the Sheriff’s Office to purchase a Lenco MedCat for use by the county SWAT team. The vote was never taken, as Sheriff Jim Mele informed the board that there might be other funding sources available. “At this time, we would like to examine those funding sources and so we would like to pull this item,” he stated. “I’ve been in contact with Cal OES on this item…there are some other avenues that I think need to be explored.”

The total cost for the military-type vehicle is over $270,000 with remaining funding potentially coming from the Sheriff’s Office budget and a Homeland Security grant.

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