Legislation would ban purchase, possession of bulletproof vests for civilians

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The recent shootings in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, prompted state Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson to take action with two pieces of legislation.

"If you have a bulletproof vest, that emboldens you to use guns because you think you're going to be invincible, because you think you're not going to get killed if you get shot," says Jacobson.

The first bill would ban the purchase or possession of bulletproof vests by anyone other than law enforcement or licensed security guards. Bulletproof vests are easily available online.

The second measure would make wearing a bulletproof vest illegal while committing any crime.

Some area residents agreed with the measure, while others said if the vests were only available to law enforcement, civilians need their own legal form of protection.

If the bill becomes law, penalties for unlawful possession of a bulletproof vest would range from a misdemeanor to a felony. Jacobson is hopeful the measures will be passed in next year's legislative session.

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