Paulding Sheriff Awarded Homeland Security Grant from GEMA
(Paulding County, GA) On April 13, 2021, the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office was the recipient of a grant totaling $301,905 which was obtained from the United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). The grant was disseminated from funds allocated by DHS and FEMA to the Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency (GEMA). The grant money was issued to the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office by GEMA for the purchase and acquisition of a Lenco Bearcat G3 armored vehicle.
The Paulding County Sheriff’s Office has been working diligently over the past 20 years to acquire funding to purchase a much-needed armored vehicle. The Sheriff’s Office S.W.A.T. Team provides mutual aid to all of our surrounding counties, especially the ones to our west. With that being said, we have had to rely on authorities in Cobb and Douglas Counties when we needed an armored vehicle in the past.
Sheriff Gary Gulledge stated, “I cannot thank our partners at GEMA enough. GEMA Director Chris Stallings and GEMA Deputy Director Harlan Proveaux were an integral part of the success of this project. Director Stallings and Deputy Director Proveaux gave crucial guidance, direction, and support to the Paulding County Sheriff’s Office on this endeavor. This armored vehicle is a state-of-the-art piece of equipment and will help our Deputies rescue citizens in the event of a terrorist attack, active shooter event, or any violent critical incident. It will also help keep critical infrastructure assets safe not only in Paulding County but in our surrounding counties as well.” Sheriff Gulledge went on to say, “I would be remiss if I didn’t thank Georgia Governor Brian Kemp as well. Without Governor Kemp’s unwavering support of public safety at both the state and local levels in Georgia, grants like this would not be possible. I am so thankful our citizens have this resource available to help keep them safe.”
Our Lenco Bearcat G3 was manufactured in Pittsfield, Massachusetts at the Lenco Armored Vehicles manufacturing facility. The “Bearcat”, as they are commonly referred to, is the industry standard in the law enforcement and military communities when it comes to armored vehicles. Our vehicle began its life as a Ford F-550 four-wheel-drive cab and chassis truck. The vehicle sports a Ford 6.7 Liter turbo diesel engine that is built for anything. With an aggressive stance, off-road capabilities, an upgraded suspension, and a virtually bulletproof exterior, this vehicle is ready for nearly anything that can be thrown at it.
On March 11, 2022, two of our Deputies went to Pittsfield, Massachusetts to tour the Lenco facility and learn all about the new Bearcat. On Monday, March 14, 2022, the Bearcat was delivered to the Sheriff’s Office by Taylor Transport, Inc. Since its arrival, the Bearcat has already helped our Deputies safely deescalate and disarm a violent suspect in a neighboring county. We are so thankful for all of the men and women who put time, energy, and effort into making this project a reality for the citizens of Paulding County and our Deputies.