(Washington Times) The sheriff’s department in Chelan County, east of Seattle, figured it could use an armored vehicle to transport its SWAT team’s response to thorny situations, thereby erasing the fear of taking fire as they sped into active shooter or barricade incidents.

When they asked the feds for a military vehicle, the Pentagon insisted they take three of them — armored, tracked vehicles designed to carry a 107 millimeter mortar, but which had the weapons removed to make it more suitable for police use.

Police departments are acquiring major battlefield equipment that emboldens officials to strong-arm those they should be protecting. “Police State USA: How Orwell’s Nightmare is Becoming our Reality” (Autographed) chronicles how we got to this point.

That was more than 14 years ago.

The sheriff’s office now wants to return the assault vehicles, which technically are still owned by the Pentagon. But shipping 10-ton trucks has proven to be a logistics nightmare, and the county may end up having to absorb the cost.

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