In the wake of the tragic shooting at a Lafayette movie theater, the Baton Rouge Police Department is planning to outfit its officers with medical kits that could be used during critical, life threatening situations.
Baton Rouge Metro Councilman John Delgado said after the July shooting which left two women dead and several more injured, it became known that Lafayette police were able to provide some immediate medical care to victims at the scene of the shooting.
He placed an item on the Metro Council agenda urging the Mayor’s Office to allocate $50,000 to purchase the medical kits for each officer. The kits would include tourniquets, gauze, bandages and a chest seal — contained in a pouch that officers would keep on them.
William Daniel, chief administrative officer for Mayor-President Kip Holden, said they have agreed to funding the kits.
Lt. Jonny Dunnam, BRPD spokesman, said the medical kits are a valuable tool for the officers.
“We do feel it is important to equip our officers with these kits after seeing the benefits of officers having them in both Lafayette and at the Virginia Tech shooting,” he said. “At any active shootings and other emergencies officers are usually the first ones on the scene and EMT’s are not allowed to go in until the threat is neutralized. If an officer can slip a on a tourniquet or apply some special gauze to stop bleeding until EMT’s can get inside it could mean the difference between life and death for some victims.”
Dunnam said the mayor’s office approved a request to use BRPD reserve funds for the purchase. But Delgado said he’d still like to see the city-parish use general funds so BRPD doesn’t have to dip into its limited resources.