Mayor Lloyd Winnecke made the concept of adding an armored car to the police department a focal point in his war on crime during his campaign. Monday morning he made good on his promise to try and cut down on neighborhood crimes when he unleashed The Guardian, which police will park on city streets like this one some time soon.
Coming to a neighborhood near you. Its not a tank, even though it may look like one. It's the brainchild of now Evansville Police Chief Billy Bolin when he was still a crime prevention officer.
"We had a lot of runs to the Linwood neighborhood. There was a lot of crime and gang activity with drugs," he says. So he looked at Peoria, IL, a town he says was riddled by crime until they employed a tank they dubbed The Armadillo.
Evansville's version is equipped with cameras and other state of the art technology so it can sit unmanned and still get the job done.
"It has smart technology in it. So officers can watch the cameras on an off-site computer, or watch it on their smart phones wherever they are," Mayor Lloyd Winnecke says. "The Neighborhood Associations love it. We've already had tons of calls from Neighborhood Association Presidents that they want this in their community."
So when you see this big truck, more than likely it sees you too.
Police aren't quite sure where they'll send The Guardian first. But Chief Bolin says he'll leave that decision up to the officers in the Crime Prevention Unit.