Baton Rouge, Louisiana
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Donations buy hundreds of ballistic vests for Louisiana officers

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DENHAM SPRINGS - Law enforcement officers in the Baton Rouge area will soon be wearing new equipment, thanks to donations from the community.

Hundreds of officers and deputies will be getting new vests with a ballistic steel core.

Brandon Cavin, owner of Bayou Gunslingers has been helping to raise money to buy the armor for officers and says the response has been amazing.

"We're getting ready to make another order next week," he said.

Thousands of dollars have been donated, mostly by private donors and local businesses. Cavin and a friend started the efforts to outfit law enforcement agencies with these vests, following the Baton Rouge shooting of six law enforcement officers in July.

"We've had guys come in here donating ... these guys are donating their last $20 or $50, you know, for this cause," said Cavin.

Word spread quickly after Cavin made a few phone calls and posted what he was trying to accomplish online. A gofundme account has raised a few thousand dollars, too.

He's already purchased a couple dozen vests and plans to put in a large order of more than 500 vests this week, fully outfitting three departments in the Baton Rouge area.

Each vest only takes a few seconds to put on, over a uniform. It weighs 16 lbs. with two steel plates, one in the front and another in the back, adding an extra layer of protection for each officer.

Cavin says donations continue to come in.

Last week, Friends of Denham Springs Police began collecting donations to outfit the Denham Springs Police Department and their efforts were successful thanks to donations.


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