By Jeremy Ratliff
Merrill Police Chief Ken Neff delivered a retired 2011 Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor to Northcentral Technical College’s Public Safety Center of Excellence in Merrill Tuesday morning.
The donation marks the end of a long-standing era.
The Crown Victoria Interceptor had become the preferred model for not only the Merrill Police Department over the last several years, but law enforcement agencies nationwide.
“We have had a consistent fleet of Ford Vehicles over the years,” said MPD Captain Corey Bennett. “The consistency of the Crown Victoria in our fleet made it easy to transfer equipment from one vehicle to another, year to year. It’s just been a very solid vehicle for us with a proven frame and drive train. The Crown Victoria had literally become the standard in patrol vehicles, for us and many other departments.”
“The Merrill Police Department has experimented with various models of patrol vehicles over the years,” Neff added.
“We had used the Diplomat model made by Dodge in the 1980s, as well as the Chevy Impala more recently. But the Crown Victoria was by far the most durable. Compared to other models, the Crown Victoria proved to be lower maintenance and provided more comfort and space for our officers.”
The donated interceptor was retired in February and replaced by a 2015 Ford SUV Interceptor.
2011 marked the last year of production of the Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, after 32 years of service.
“Normally we sell our patrol cars when they are retired, but I think this squad will serve a better use at the training center,” Neff said.
Merrill Police Chief Ken Neff delivers the keys of a retired 2011 Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor, to Doug Jennings of NTC on Tuesday morning.