PHILIPPI, W.Va. – The Barbour County Sheriff’s Department is asking commissioners to help protect its deputies.

Newly elected Sheriff, Brett Carpenter, said his staff of nine needs new bulletproof vests. He asked commissioners if they would pay half of the $9,000, and he would come up with the rest out of his budget. He also asked for two new vehicles, and again, he asked commissioners to pay for one, and he would budget the other.

Carpenter explained that his deputies need trucks to get to rural areas of the county.

“What we are seeing is your SUVs that are sitting on car frames. In Barbour County, we do a lot more off-road than we do on pavement and we’re seeing a lot more front-end damage,” Sheriff Carpenter explained, “So, we’re kind of shuffling on towards more pickup trucks because of the ground clearance and also because of storage space and the tough boxes.”

Commissioners emphasized that they will address both needs at their next scheduled meeting on February 1.