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House of Representatives
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: May 25, 2022 04:40 PM
From: Representative Tim Briggs
To: All House members
Subject: Outlaws the Possession of Body Armor
In the near future, I plan to introduce legislation to outlaw the purchase or possession of body armor within the Commonwealth. 

Unfortunately, we are at a point in the General Assembly where the majority is not capable of providing the leadership needed to address the seriousness of gun violence through common sense firearm regulation. The majority has stonewalled any reasonable firearm reforms, prefers moments of silence, thought and prayers, and misappropriates blame on mental health issues that have been historically underfunded by them. We are at an inflection point where we either become part of the solution or we have blood on our hands

In the two most recent massacres, I have noticed the murderers wore body armor which prevented law enforcement from neutralizing the threat early in the engagement. The killers outgunned law enforcement with their military weapons as well as the military grade body armor they wore.

In fact, in the white supremacist fueled massacre in Buffalo a “good guy with a gun,” a retired police officer working security at a Tops grocery store confronted the killer, shot him but the killer continued the attack. The shots fired by the “good guy with a gun” had no effect on the killer because the killer was wearing military grade body armor.

Moreover, a killer armed with an AR-15 slaughters 19 nine and ten year old elementary school children along with two teacher at the Robb Elementary School in Texas. As of now, there are 21 dead at the Elementary School, 5 less deaths than the 26 killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School. The killer was wearing a carrier vest, a type of body armor that may have prevented law enforcement from neutralizing him early in the engagement. Robb Elementary School employed security, had surveillance cameras and law enforcement responded almost immediately but could not protect the children in their fourth-grade classroom from the power of a military assault rifle wielded by a mass murder wearing body armor.

Currently, New York is debating the prohibition of body armor, Connecticut has the strictest restricts on body armor possession, under Federal Law felons are prohibited from possessing body armor, Australia prohibits the possession of body armor, the European Union prohibits civilians from possessing military armament including ballistic protection, and in four Canadian provinces you cannot possess body armor without a permit issued by law enforcement.   

Since the House majority is unwilling to move any reasonable firearm reform legislation, maybe we can move legislation to outlaw the possession of body armor and give our law enforcement a fighting chance. The use of body armor is becoming common among mass shooters who use these military weapons to murder children and the elderly.

I will not give up on advocating for responsible firearm safety legislation but outlawing body armor in the Commonwealth may prevent some deaths when the next mass shooting happens in the Commonwealth. A person who currently possesses body armor will have 15 days to turn it in to a law enforcement agency or they commit a felony.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this legislation.