The last several weeks and months have presented law enforcement officers and departments across the country with many challenges. The Los Angeles Police Department reported 156 patrol cars damaged and 8 totaled. The New York Police Department reported 303 police cars as damaged, and the Philadelphia police reported 93 vehicles damaged since May 30th. Two AR-15 rifles were stolen from the Seattle police along with police vehicles being burned or spray painted during the violent protests that occurred in Seattle this past summer. Denver saw 33 police vehicles damaged within just 8 days. In July of 2020, a high powered assault weapon was stolen from a police vehicle when the officer left a window of the vehicle down during a foot pursuit, and just several weeks ago the Indiana State Police reported a handgun stolen from a marked ISP vehicle. These headlines and many other like them have dominated news feeds for the last several months. With many demonstrations and protests across the country turning violent, police officers and vehicles have often been the target of these riots, and the need for secure in-vehicle weapon storage by law enforcement personnel has become increasingly apparent.
However, the need for secure in-vehicle storage is not a new problem. In a 2018 article, The Trace examined records from more than 100 law enforcement agencies and discovered that the 100 agencies had collectively reported the loss or theft of at least 1,781 guns between 2008 and 2017. That’s an average of 178 guns per year across those 100 agencies. Keep in mind that there are over 15,400 law enforcement agencies in the United States. Those numbers really add up, and those numbers have only increased over the last several years.
Of the reported 1,781 guns stolen from law enforcement in the study, nearly half were taken from police vehicles. Glove boxes, trunks, floorboards, and seats were among the most common places from which weapons were stolen, showing a police vehicle alone is not a secure enough location for a police-issued weapon or firearm.
To put it simply, law enforcement isn’t immune to the weapon theft problem, and law enforcement vehicles may be seen as high-risk, high-reward targets since criminals know they’re likely carrying a high-powered weapon. If a weapon is successfully stolen, consequences can be severe for both officers and the community. With increasing social unrest and riots that continue to play out across our nation, safe and durable in-vehicle storage for weapons and other equipment is proving to be a necessary, rather than an optional, investment.
Estes AWS Weapon Lockers Provide Security & Easy Access
Safe weapon storage is fundamental for law enforcement officers, and Estes AWS works to protect both law enforcement and communities through our Rapid Access Weapon Lockers and accessories. Estes AWS Weapon Lockers are mounted in the rear of a vehicle, strategically installed to keep weapons out of sight and out of mind for criminals. Our lockers are engineered with security in mind, and they are manufactured from steel to deliver top-quality durability in the event thieves do find them. Concerned about having immediate access to the weapons if they’re moved to the rear of the vehicle? Our rapid-access, automated-opening technology presents the weapons in a matter of seconds with just the push of a button.
Whether your fleet is made up of SUVs, pickup trucks, sedans, or a mixture of all three, you can quickly upfit your entire fleet with Estes AWS Weapon Lockers. AWS lockers can be installed in various vehicle types and fit most major vehicle platforms. This includes, but is not limited to:
- Ford Interceptor Utility (2020s and pre-2020s)
- Chevrolet Tahoe
- Dodge Durango
- Ford Interceptor Sedan
- Chevrolet Impala
- Dodge Charger
In addition to its compatibility with multiple vehicle types, the simple design of our automated weapon lockers, coupled with standardized dimensions, allows for easy transfer between vehicle platforms and vehicle types. This universal design saves a department money by not requiring an additional locker purchase when a vehicle is retired or equipment is switched between vehicles. With many departments facing budget cuts or departments who are already budget-strained, Estes AWS products prove to be a budget-friendly option.
Choose Estes AWS, a weapon security solution designed with officers in mind
Police weapon theft has been an issue for numerous years, and the recent events in our country have heightened the issue to a new level. Secure vehicle storage for police officers not only protects departments but also communities, and Estes AWS Automated Weapon Lockers can provide you and your department peace of mind on and off duty.