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7 Facts and Figures: What does participation in the 1033 Program mean?

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Posted on: September 9, 2014

The Hyattsville Police Department was recently suspended from a program that provides military-surplus equipment to local law enforcement agencies.  Here is more information about participating in that program:

1. Maryland State Police records show that since 2006, the Hyattsville Police Department has received four M-16 assault rifles, three 12-gage “riot type” shotguns, and 20 40-caliber Glocks, along with the much-debated Humvee, a portable generator, and storage equipment.

2. Lt. Chris Purvis confirmed that the Hyattsville police department joined the program in 1998. “The first documents we can find where we actually obtained weapons would have been in the vicinity of 2001 to 2004,” said Holland. The full list of what Hyattsville has received from the program has not been made public, but the HL&T has requested one under the Freedom of Information Act.

3. Hyattsville is among 108 Maryland police departments registered with the program. Two have been suspended: Hyattsville and the Worcester County’s Sheriff’s Department. Of the more than 8,000 law enforcement agencies enrolled throughout the nation, 184 have been suspended.

4. Data compiled by NPR shows that the Prince George’s County Police Department has acquired 777 weapons through the federal program, putting it in the top 10 U.S. counties receiving weapons from the program. (Howard County also makes the list.)

5. Several other local municipalities are also involved in the program. Records show University Park, Riverdale and Mount Rainier have all received military-grade equipment, sometimes to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars. For example, since 2006, University of Maryland Police in College Park have received 49 M-16’s.

6. Also according to data from NPR, two thirds of police departments in the U.S. issue Glocks. Hyattsville’s police chief said the Glocks “are the same caliber sidearms that our officers have been carrying for quite a number of years now.” Holland also said that shotguns are the best weapon to use “to destroy animals that are severely injured,” like a deer who has collided with a car.”

7. The mobile generator, said Holland, was acquired for secondary backup at the administration building or as primary backup for the City’s public works department.

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