That’s the amount raised from the community to pay for improvements to the armored vehicle recently donated to the Brownwood Police Department. The vehicle needs outfitting and some tender loving care before going into use for the SWAT team jointly operated by the police department and sheriff’s office.
The vehicle’s age is unclear. After starting out as a Brinks armored truck, the vehicle was then used by the Mansfield Police Department. Mansfield police obtained a different armored vehicle and donated the one they had to the Brownwood Police Department.
Donations and money from the sale of specially designed T-shirts through Willie’s T’s have come in steadily since Sheriff Vance Hill and then-Brownwood Police Chief Terry Nichols — who has resigned to become chief in Seguin — announced the fund-raising campaign last month.
On Tuesday, members of North Lake Community Church presented Hill and Nichols with a $500 check to have the words “In God We Trust” as part of a wrap that will be installed at Willie’s T’s. Church members resolved to raise the money to have those words on the wrap.
“North Lake Community Church has always been a great supporter of the sheriff’s office, and it warms our heart for you all to reach out to us in every way that you do,” Hill told pastor Ron Keener and other church members. “Anything that may office needs, it’s like you all are there to support us.”
The amount raised at that time was just over $8,700.
Friday morning, the sheriff’s office received a check for $1,500 for the sale of the T-shirts, pushing the total to $10,568. Orders are being taken through April 21. The shirts can be ordered online through the Facebook pages of the Brownwood Police Department and Brown County Sheriff’s Office, and can be picked up at Wendlee Broadcasting, Hill said.
Cash donations are also welcomed.
“We in law enforcement are truly blessed by the support we receive from the fold in this county,” Hill said via text message.
The vehicle is being worked on at Blevins Body Shop, where it is receiving spray-in bedlinen on the bumpers and minor body work, Hill said. Radios and lights have been ordered, and the hope is to have the vehicle ready for a public unveiling in about three weeks.
The vehicle was in excellent mechanical condition when it was obtained from Mansfield, Hill and Nichols said earlier.