BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - A former Baton Rouge police chief said after witnessing the recent shootings in Baton Rouge, he wanted to give back to the force that he led from 2000 to 2004. Specifically, he wants to raise money for better equipment.
Pat Englade said the crowd control gear used by the Baton Rouge Police Department during protests was woefully inadequate.
"It was probably 30 years old," Englade said. "It probably predated my tenure at the police department, and it needed to be replaced, it's rotting."
Englade started the donation site, Protect our Protectors, after the ambush killing of three law enforcement officers on July 17.
Money raised will go towards new crowd control gear and new stronger, protective vests with ceramic plates that will provide better protection against high powered weapons, like the weapon gunman Gavin Long used.
"When somebody's shooting a weapon of that type, to be honest with you there's very little you're gonna do to stop that," Englade said. "But anything
above what they have now would at least maybe give em a fighting chance."
Englade estimates that the new shields and helmets for crowd control would cost $400 a set, and the new vests would be between $300 and $500 each.
However, Englade said they have already raised nearly $50,000.
Leonardo Verde, the general manager at Sullivan's Steakhouse, is Englade's partner on the project. He said the benefits could be reaped very soon.
"We could do this in a matter of weeks. We could have every officer with the right equipment," Verde said.
Englade said the donations will go to the BRPD equipment fund, and Chief Carl Dabadie will decide how to allocate the funds and which type of equipment to buy.