Mayor Stephanie Rawlings-Blake has stated that she considered Baltimore’s police response to the unrest to have been relatively restrained and “much different” from what took place in Ferguson and other places

While acknowledging that some police equipment is military in nature, Karl N. Milligan of the National Police Defense Foundation stressed that surplus military items can be used ceremonially, while even big-wheeled, armored trucks have defensive uses.

Milligan, a former police lieutenant, said he was once rescued “when I was pinned down in the street and an armed man with a rifle was in a second-story window aiming at us. The police armored vehicle drove down the street and pulled me inside … eliminating the need for cover fire by other officers to complete my extraction.”

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