President Donald Trump will sign an executive order Monday fully restoring a Defense Department program that transfers military equipment to police, The Daily Caller has learned.
The DOD’s 1033 program was launched in 1990 and has since transferred more than $5.4 billion in military surplus equipment to state, tribal and local law enforcement agencies, according a Justice Department document.
Following public outcry over militarized riot police in the 2015 Ferguson riots, President Barack Obama significantly limited the types of equipment available through the program. Attorney General Jeff Sessions will announce at a speech Monday at the Fraternal Order of Police convention that Trump will fully restore the program.
“The President’s Executive Order restores the full scope of a longstanding program for recycling surplus, lifesaving gear from the Department of Defense, along with restoring the full scope of grants used to purchase this type of equipment from other sources,” a DOJ document obtained by TheDC states.
This equipment includes clothing, rifles, ammunition, armored vehicles, helmets and more. The executive order signed by Obama in 2015 prohibited the DOD from transferring .50 caliber firearms or ammunition, and camouflage uniforms. The order also made it more difficult for agencies to acquire armored vehicles, battering rams, riot helmets, riot shields and drones.
“This type of equipment has been used in high-profile police operations such as San Bernardino, where armored vehicles and other military gear were used to protect the lives of the officers who pursued and ultimately killed the terrorists,” the DOJ stated in a document. “A military-style helmet also stopped a bullet and saved the life of an officer responding to the Orlando nightclub shooting.”
A recent study touted by the DOJ also found that “for every $5,800 in military aid given to law enforcement agencies through this program, society saves roughly $112,000 in costs due to prevented crime.”