Local law enforcement donating ballistic vests to Ukraine

Surplus police gear leaving departments like Sylvania for Ukraine
Published: Apr. 13, 2022 at 11:30 AM EDT
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SYLVANIA, Ohio (WTVG) - Many different supplies from across the world have been collected to help people in Ukraine and now some very specialized equipment is coming from police departments in our area.

Surplus gear like ballistic vests will soon be on the way.

The call went out to police and sheriff departments across Ohio. If they had extra gear it could be sent to Ukraine. One of the places that responded was the Sylvania Police Department.

The ballistic vest is a piece of police protective gear that law enforcement in this country takes for granted but it’s something becoming more of a luxury in Ukraine as the war there rages on.

“We were right away interested in helping,” said Sylvania Police Chief Rick Schnoor.

When the Governor’s office asked for surplus gear, Sylvania police not only had some but they were able to come up with 29 ballistic vests that were no longer in service for the Ukraine civilian territorial defense.

“Some of the testimonials of the police officers who are still working there, some in a military role and even in their civilian role trying to assist the citizens trying to evacuate and just the idea that they wouldn’t have basic equipment like body armor to protect themselves from not only bullets but shrapnel or any other type of explosive device,” said Chief Schnoor.

Chief Schnoor stressed this is not gear taken away from current officers. It’s extra. About 30 departments have participated statewide.

The equipment includes things like helmets, plates and vests. Eventually it will be distributed through a group in Parma, Ohio that will help get them to Ukraine. A small part people in our area can play to hopefully keep people safe and even potentially save lives.

“We wear that equipment and we know the value of its use,” said Chief Schnoor. “For that equipment to help other people is really special to us.”

Four other departments from across our area have donated equipment as well.

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