Policy: Armored Response Vehicle


The purpose of this document is to serve as a guideline for the use and deployment of the Michigan State University Police Department’s (Department) armored response vehicle (ARV).


It is the policy of this Department that the deployment of the ARV will be based on potential or specific needs, as determined based on scene assessment or intelligence information concerning the call. Most special response team calls involve suspects with firearms and the ARV provides the best safety to team members and the public due to its ballistic protection capabilities.


Ownership and Maintenance

The ARV is part of the Department’s vehicle fleet and the Department is responsible for the maintenance and fueling of the vehicle.

Oil changes will be based on “hours” rather than mileage driven occurring after every 200 hours of engine use.


Cleanliness of the vehicle, both internal and external, will be the responsibility of the Ingham Regional Special Response Team (IRSRT).


The ARV is available to any law enforcement agency in the Ingham County regional area.

Requests for deployment shall be coordinated through the IRSRT and final authorization of Chief of Police (Chief) or designee.

If IRSRT needs to use the vehicle, the Team Commander shall contact the Chief or designee for that approval.

External agencies may request the ARV by contacting the Ingham County 9-1-1 Central Dispatch office (911 Center).

The 911 Center will contact the IRSRT Commander

The IRSRT Commander will then contact the Chief to get authorization.

If authorization is granted, two Department IRSRT members that are trained in the ARV’s operation will be deployed with the vehicle.

Department IRSRT personnel that respond shall only operate the ARV and shall not participate in the tactical operation in any other capacity, unless prior approval was given by the IRSRT Commander.

The requesting agency maintains tactical command at the scene, but if Department IRSRT personnel bringing the ARV determine that an action requested by that agency would violate Department policy, they can override that request and refuse to comply.

At the conclusion of the situation, a report will be generated titled “Assist Other Agency” and forwarded to the IRSRT Commander.

ARV Applications

The use of the ARV may include, but not be limited to, the following tactical situations:

Rescue of civilians and/or police officers from dangerous locations posing potential risk of harm.

Rescue of injured persons under an actual or potential firearms threat.

Resolution of tactical critical incidents, i.e., armed suicidal subjects, barricaded felons, hostage situations, high-risk warrant services, etcallow the use of the ARV and may result in the vehicle performing the following functions:

Providing a mobile ballistic wall to protect team members, arrest teams, entry teams, and inside perimeter movements of tactical personnel.

Safely deliver a negotiator’s “Throw Phone System.”

Safely deliver food/drinks to suspects during negotiations.

Recover and safely transport released hostages.

Delivery of chemical munitions; either by hand, pole, or using a launched-delivery system.

Approach suspect locations to utilize distraction devices, video surveillance equipment, to disable utilities, or implement other similar tactics.

Implement a safe approach and entry into hostile threat areas where firearms are being actively used.

Serve as a platform for negotiations in cases where no other location is available due to site restrictions; or when a suspect will not use a “Throw Phone System.”

Gather information using a direct approach and visual inspection of structures where suspect(s) are located.

Using daylight or thermal camera systems to locate suspect(s).

Initiate a psychological impact to suspect(s) by the vehicle’s presence.

Any other function associated with a changing and/or evolving tactical environment.

While the majority of the capabilities of the ARV are defensive, their offensive capabilities may be utilized with the approval of the IRSRT Commander. Such instances could include:

Removing barriers to clear sight paths; including trees, bushes, doors outbuildings, etc.

Removing security bars by using a tow strap connected to the ARV.

Blocking vehicle access or immobilizing vehicles to prevent the suspect(s) escape.

Creating openings in walls to provide a means of entry/escape.

Generally, the ARV will not be utilized during civil disorders.

There may be instances which might dictate the use of the ARV.

The decision to deploy the ARV into a civil disorder scene shall be made by the Chief.

Operational Protocols

The ARV is a large and heavy vehicle that is capable of traversing rough terrain.

Caution must be exercised in its operation.

Compliance with the Michigan Motor Vehicle Code, relevant laws, ordinances, and Department policy is required.

Personnel shall exercise due caution when operating the vehicle, including when pedestrians are present.

The following protocols are to be followed when the ARV is deployed:









Only closed beverage containers are allowed inside the vehicle.

The operator of the ARV will ensure that all passengers are briefed on the basics of ARV operation, to include: doors, weapons port, or similar unique operations.

No tactical equipment shall be stored in the ARV, unless approved by the IRSRT Commander.

All damage that occurs to the ARV must be reported to the IRSRT Commander.

This includes damage to another person’s property, which occurs during operations involving the ARV.

The Department is financially responsible for operational and/or training damage to the ARV.

An operating log shall be kept in the glove box of the vehicle.

Entries on the log shall be made by the operator after every use, including training.

The operator of the ARV shall ensure that the main power switch is in the “Off” position prior to it being secured in the garage.

Both the interior and the exterior of the ARV shall be cleaned after every deployment.

The fuel level shall maintained at a minimum of one-half (½) of a tank.











All IRSRT members shall participate in a training session covering the proper operation of the ARV and conducted by an approved instructor.

This annual training will include a review of the essential components of the vehicle along with a driving assessment.

The ARV shall be included in the monthly IRSRT training to provide for continued familiarization on the part of all IRSRT personnel and allow for a monthly use of the vehicle’s components.

Familiarization training for those agencies who might request the vehicle shall be provided by trained IRSRT personnel.

Placement of ARV as a Static Display

The ARV may be utilized as part of a static display for law enforcement, public safety or other special events; but must be approved by the Chief.

Viewing of the interior of the vehicle is permitted.

When the vehicle is on display, a minimum of two Department ARV operators will deliver and staff the vehicle during the event.