P.D. gets funding for 35 new bulletproof vests

BARBARAELLEN KOCH FILE PHOTO | Riverhead police speaking to a Hispanic bicyclist on West Main Street in downtown Riverhead in 2009.
(Credit: Barbaraellen Koch, FILE)

Area police officers will soon benefit from the protection of new bulletproof vests, thanks to grant funding from Attorney General Eric Schneiderman’s office.

Riverhead will receive $12,000 in funding towards the purchase of 35 vests, which will cover new vests for just under half of the force. Meanwhile, Southold will receive just under $3,000 to put towards nine vests. Southampton will receive enough funding to cover the cost of three vests.

The funding comes through the Attorney General’s inVEST Partnership, a statewide program that helps such agencies purchase vests for sworn officers.

According to the Attorney General, 71 officers in New York State have been shot and killed in the line of duty since 1984. The National Institute of Justice estimates that bulletproof vests have saved more than 3,000 police officers’ lives nationwide during that same time period.

In total, departments throughout the state will receive total of about $1.5 million in grants to support the purchase of 4,728 bulletproof vests.