Fundraiser successful for SWAT team

2013-12-27T20:00:00Z 2013-12-27T21:56:41Z Fundraiser successful for SWAT teamChas Reilly, (219) 662-5324
December 27, 2013 8:00 pm  • 

Area residents have responded to the Northwest Regional SWAT team's need for another armored vehicle.

The team hosted its first large fundraiser recently.

Merrillville police Sgt. Bob Morgan, the commander of the SWAT team, said he estimated 300 people would attend the event. The program attracted 640 people.

The program included several raffles and a silent auction.

"We're planning on the event being bigger and better next year," Morgan said.

The total amount generated wasn't yet available, but funds received will be used to buy a second armored vehicle for Northwest Regional SWAT, Morgan said.

The cost of the armored police Bearcat the team plans to purchase is $219,000, Morgan said. Although the fundraiser was a success, the team has more fundraising to do before it can buy the vehicle.

The team received a Mine Resistant Ambush Protected vehicle in October. Morgan said the Bearcat has more maneuverability than the MRAP armored vehicle, which came at no cost to Northwest Regional SWAT.

Prior to obtaining the MRAP, the only item team members had to stop rifle rounds was a small plate on their body armor, Morgan said.

He stressed the purpose of the armored vehicles is to protect officers and residents during emergencies, such as hostage situations.

Morgan recalled a situation on Christmas in 2012 when Northwest Regional SWAT was involved in a six-hour standoff with a person armed with a rifle in a Crown Point home.

"These vehicles are about letting us operate safely" and rescuing people, he said.

Fundraisers are necessary for the team because Northwest Regional SWAT is almost entirely self-funded, Morgan said.

The team serves Merrillville, Crown Point, Schererville, Dyer, Griffith, Hobart, Lowell, Munster and Lake Station.

Each member department is responsible to provide a ballistic vest, helmet and M-4 rifle for each officer they have on the team. Northwest Regional SWAT handles the other expenses for the team.

"We don't want to be a huge financial burden on (local police departments)," Morgan said.

People interested in donating to Northwest Regional SWAT can contact Morgan at (219) 769-3531.

Copyright 2014 All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

About Merrillville

Town Hall

7820 Broadway Ave. Merrillville, IN 46410
Fax: 219.756.6170

Police Department

7820 Broadway Merrillville, IN 46410
Emergency: 911
Non-emergency 219.769.3531
Administration: 219.769.3722
Crime Tip Hotline: 219.756.6180 ext. 54

Fire Department

26 W. 73rd Ave. Merrillville, IN 46410
Emergency: 911
Non-emergency 219.769.0004
Fax: 219.756.6170

Parks & Recreation

5750 Tyler Place Merrillville, IN 46410
Phone: 219.980.5911

Lake County Public Library

1919 West 81st Avenue Merrillville, IN 46410
Phone: 219.769.3541

Merrillville Community School Corporation

6701 Delaware Street Merrillville, IN 46410
Phone: 219.650.5300

Latest Local Offers

Featured Businesses