The Jenkintown Police Department recently picked up some form-fitting, life-saving apparel.
The department, through a $6,000 Department of Justice Community Oriented Policing Services grant, purchased 11 bulletproof vests for each of its officers. Police Chief Albert DiValentino said he reached out to borough council last summer, asking for replacement vests. Borough council then worked with State Sen. Leanna Washington to bring the grant home.
“The vests we had prior to these were over five years old — and they were purchased with a grant too,” DiValentino said. “They say they should be replaced every five years so the material keeps up with the evolving weapons.”
Each vest is lightweight and custom fitted to each officer; they’re worn every time an officer hits the streets.
“Safety is absolutely a priority,” DiValentino said. “Having an officer out there without the proper safety equipment is like having a traffic light without bulbs.”
DiValentino said the police department is also looking to secure money — perhaps, again through grants — to upgrade its laptops, police car cameras, and even the police cars.