Pittsfield Board Approves Police Purchase of Vehicle, Equipment

 02/01/2019 - 00:18

A replacement police patrol vehicle and a narcotics-analyzing device will soon be new additions to the Pittsfield Police Department.

Trustees unanimously approved the purchase of both items during Wednesday’s Pittsfield Charter Township Board meeting. The trustees’ decision follows a similar approval of purchases made earlier this month, with the board approving the acquisition of a new fire truck.

According to the meeting’s agenda item, the replacement vehicle will be a used 2014 Chevrolet Caprice police patrol vehicle and would be purchased for a cost not to exceed $15,030. The newly acquired car would replace a patrol vehicle that had previously sustained significant front-end damage following a crash between an officer and an Ann Arbor resident’s vehicle. The incident, which occurred last December, resulted in damage that was too severe to be repaired. The item states that due to the used vehicle’s mileage, the purchased car is expected to last the department two to three years before needing a replacement.

In addition to the replacement vehicle, the purchase of a TruNarc Drug Analyzer was approved at a cost not to exceed $27,395. The analyzer device’s purchase will be reimbursed in full by a Federal Byrne Justice Assistance Grant award through the Michigan State Police, according to the agenda item. The TruNarc Drug Analyzer is a handheld device that can scan and identify a suspected narcotic substance without making direct contact, ranging between substances such as heroin to synthetic drugs and opiates.

 “We’ll be the first department in the area to have this sort of equipment,” said Matthew Harshberger, director of Pittsfield’s Public Safety Department.

Harshberger told trustees that although officers will train to use the analyzer hardware, the device will be assigned to one of the vehicles of the department’s command officers. The device would then be used by officers out on patrol, with supervision by a commanding officer.

Antonio Sanchez's picture
Antonio Sanchez
Antonio Sanchez is an experienced journalist who covered city and county government for the Rio Rancho Observer in New Mexico.