LAUSD School Police Will Give up Grenade Launchers

By Julianne Hing Sep 17, 2014

Los Angeles Unified School District police officials announced Tuesday that the agency will return three grenade launchers to the federal government amidst public outcry over the militarization of the school police department, the Los Angeles Times reported.

The agency will, however, hold on to 61 rifles and a Mine-Resistant Ambush Protected armored vehicle designed to withstand improvised explosive device attacks. LAUSD received the grenade launcher, rifles and armored vehicle from the Defense Department’s 1033 program, which distributes surplus military equipment to local and school police departments.

The Los Angeles school police department’s arsenal came to light after police repression in Ferguson raised questions about surplus military equipment disbursements. More than 100 school police department agencies around the country have also received similiar equipment as the LAUSD, the Washington Post reported.

More than $5 billion in equipment has been handed out to police agencies within the U.S. since 1997, the Los Angeles Times reported.