Aw, the LAUSD has to give up its three grenade launchers now that the public found about them and got all "Why does a school district need grenade launchers?" Still, as consolation prizes, they'll get to keep their mine-resistant vehicle and 61 M16 assault rifles, so they'll still easily be able to beat the students if it ever comes down to a full-scale battle (NOT THAT IT WOULD, we're assured). The Los Angeles School Police Department, LA County's fifth largest law enforcement agency, got the military equipment for free via the Pentagon's 1033 program, which hands out surplus equipment to domestic law enforcement agencies and "at least 22 school systems in eight states," according to the LA Times. The school district has had the weapons since 2001 and the tank for just a few months.
Education and civil rights activists have asked the Department of Defense to stop sending military-grade weapons to our nation's public schools, arguing that "the presence of weapons on campuses will only intensify existing tensions at schools and exacerbate punitive atmospheres." Meanwhile, LAUSD says that the tank "will be used only under extraordinary circumstances" and that the M16 rifles are "essential life-saving items," which is a good phrase to keep in your back pocket in case anyone ever asks you what "Orwellian" means.
· L.A. schools police will return grenade launchers but keep rifles, armored vehicle [LAT]
· Why Does the LAUSD Have 3 Grenade Launchers and a Tank? [Curbed LA]