Rio Hondo police receive body armor grant

RIO HONDO — Chief William Bilokury will be handing out new bulletproof vests to his officers at the start of the year.

Ben Medina, Rio Hondo city administrator, said “in January all of our officers will have brand new fitted, rifle-resistant bulletproof vests.”

The city of Rio Hondo recently approved a resolution to request funds for the bulletproof vest project so officers are better protected in the line of duty.

Grant funds from the Governor’s Office will be available Jan. 1.

Medina said the city applied for 11 vests to cover officers and volunteers.

“It is very important. We want to protect our officers,” Medina said. “Right now, the city does not have any bulletproof vests.”

During the 85th Legislative Session, Gov. Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 12, which funds the $25 million statewide grant program designed to provide personal body armor to law enforcement officers across Texas.

Even a small town like Rio Hondo could one day become in danger where police must brave gunmen, such as the case of the officers who were ambushed in Dallas last year.

Sen. Royce West, author of Senate Bill 12, said, “We must protect our law enforcement officers at all costs.”

The city of Rio Hondo is one of the many cities across the state requesting funds to purchase the body armor designed to withstand shots from high- powered rifles.

“We must do all we can to protect those who protect us,” said Abbott.

The Governor’s Criminal Justice Division (CJD) has been accepting grant applications from law enforcement agencies seeking assistance for the purchase of rifle-resistant body armor.

“The men and women who put their lives on the line to protect Texans deserve the greatest protections, and as governor I am committed to doing all I can to support them,” Abbott said.

Bulletproof vest project of the Governor’s Office to better protect police

$25 million state grant to help local police departments buy bulletproof vests.

Senate Bill 12 by Dallas Sen. Royce West was approved by a vote of 141-1

House approves bill May 17