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Georgiana Police Department receives grants, new equipment

New grants to the Georgiana Police Department, courtesy of the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs (ADECA), looks poised to make the lives of its officers—and the lives of the community members they serve—a bit safer.

The department is slated to outfit its officers with brand-new body cameras and bulletproof vests in the coming week, thanks to a pair of ADECA grants totaling more than $7,000.

Georgiana Police Department chief Carlton Cook said that the grants are the fruit of a labor that began a few months ago.

“I applied for a grant through ADECA back on March 1, 2017,” Cook said. “And just two weeks ago, we were awarded the grant.  One grant was $3,520, and the other grant was $3,658.”

The $7,178 awarded by the pair of grants enabled the Georgiana Police Department to purchase eight bulletproof vests, eight body cameras and enough hard drives and software to manage the storage body camera videos.

Cook said that he saw a need for vests, body cameras and other equipment and, drawing upon his experiences with grant writing with the Montgomery Police Department, sought to shore up the department’s equipment supplies.

The body cameras in particular, he said, would protect the community as well as those who serve it.

“The body cameras would be evidence to back up officers, and also to validate what citizens say, as well,” Cook added.

“And they reduce a lot of complaints.”

The orders for the cameras, hard drives and vests have been placed. The latter two items have already been received, with the body cameras scheduled to arrive within a week.

An ADECA grant will also bolster the Georgiana Police Department’s available fleet of vehicles, adding A Ford Expedition and two Ford Explorers in the next month.