Groveland Massachusetts, a small town of about 6,000 people located in Essex County to the north of Boston, is one of tradition. They have long been a city that held true to the motto: If it aint broke, don't fix it. Puritan immigrants who landed around the Salem area in the 1600s founded it. The only one of the more than 900 church bells created by Paul Revere still in regular use is at the Congregational church in Groveland. Likewise, the oldest hand-pumped fire engine in the country sits at its fire station. When the time came to update the streetlights in historic Elm Park downtown, the city replaced them with lights that looked just like the old ones.
However, the city's law enforcement organ, the Groveland Police Department, decided that cutting edge is where they needed to be and went with Glocks for their standard sidearm of choice. Better yet, they did it for free.
Staff writer Mike LaBella with the Newburyport News broke the local story of how Groveland made such a score last month. The city long carried .38 revolvers until about 20 years ago when they upgraded to wondernine pistols. In 2002, they shelved the parabellums and moved to Glock 22/23 pistols in .40S&W. In exchange for their well used-but-not-abused model 22s (and a few guns the department has in their evidence vault that were no longer needed) a Glock distributor in Rochester New York hooked the department up with 20 brand new Glock 21SF's. No money changed hands in the deal, simply a gentleman's agreement and trade of these for those and everyone walked away happy.
Furthermore, the article even went on to say that "To sweeten the deal, Fournier [department's firearms instructor and armorer] said, the Glock company took all of the department's .40 caliber ammunition it had in stock and swapped it for what he said was the slightly more expensive .45 caliber ammunition, and at no cost to the department"
Groveland isn't one of the largest departments in the world. The City's website lists a chief, deputy chief, training sergeant, detective, and five full time officers. Ten reserve officers, four dispatchers, four constables, and nearly two dozen jailers, animal control, and support personnel make up the rest of the force. From the looks of things, they will have enough for all of the full time and reserve officers as well as a couple spares.
Introduced in 1990, the Glock 21 has grown through four generations and is a duty-sized semi-automatic with a tenifer coated slide and polymer frame. Its 8.11-ich length overall allows for a 4.61-inch barrel and an unloaded weight of just 26.28-ounces. When a fully loaded 13-round magazine is inserted and a 14th round carried in the chamber, the gun tips the scales at 38-ounces. This is about the same weight as a Colt 1911, but with twice the magazine capacity. For a full-sized .45 auto, the G21 is known as having a smaller than average recoil and muzzle flip, factors that contribute to a more controllable gun and faster follow-up shots. The 'SF' designation means that the pistol is a specially designed slim-frame model that reduces the circumference of the receiver at the rear, or "back strap," offering increased comfort and control-especially for shooters with smaller hands. This is good because at least one of Groveland's full time officers is female.
Hundreds of law enforcement agencies carry the G21 across the country...now including the Groveland PD.