The majority of inhabitants of the state of New York are not permitted, with very few exceptions, to purchase kevlar vests for civilian use.
The legislation, which was passed on July 6th and went into effect the same day, made it illegal for citizens of the state who were “not engaged nor employed in a qualifying profession” to buy, sell, exchange, give away, or otherwise dispose of body armor on their own.
In the beginning, the only persons who could qualify for this program were those who worked as police officers, peace officers, or who were actively serving in the armed forces of the United States or in the State of New York Army or Air National Guard.
After a shooting rampage in May at a supermarket in Buffalo, which resulted in the deaths of 10 people, the measure was rushed through the Legislature of New York State and signed into law. When the legislation was first enacted, it merely prohibited “bullet-resistant soft body armor,” which left a possible opening for citizens who wished to purchase bulletproof vests built with steel, ceramic, or polyethylene plates but was prohibited under the statute.
It is important to note that this loophole doesn’t really cover a steel-plated vest that the Buffalo shooter wore during the shooting. This vest was robust enough to block a bullet fired from the handgun belonging to a grocery store’s security guards.
During the process of drafting the legislation, the Democratic State Legislator Jonathan Jacobson, who is also the primary proponent of the measure, stated that he and his colleagues were unaware of the distinctions between the various types of body armor.
I believe the most important point was that we took key steps that greatly reduced the possibility that lawbreakers will use bulletproof vests in the execution of crimes, he attempted to claim, adding that he is ready and able to revise the legislation to encompass body armor that uses steel, ceramic, or polyethylene plates. I think the most important thing has been that we took key steps that lessened the potential that criminals will use bulletproof vests in the commission of crimes.
“We did not want to allow the pursuit of perfection stands in the way of achieving a decent result,” Jacobson stated. “We intended to get stuff done as rapidly as possible.” “As is the case with all laws in the state of New York, we are always working to improve them in the years to come. Obviously, we are going to work hard to improve upon this legislation.
This stance was also taken by Hochul’s office in public pronouncements, and they did so without acknowledging that they had any gaps in their knowledge of the various types of body armor.
According to a statement released by her office, Governor Hochul is “proud” to have signed the historic new law that was passed by the house of representatives to restrict the selling of body armor. She also plans to work with the legislature to expand this same definition included in the law as soon as the opportunity presents itself.
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The possession of body armor is subject to the first statewide prohibition in the form of New York’s ban on bulletproof vests. There are just a handful of states and local governments around the country that even impose limits on the selling of body armor. Only violent offenders are subject to the toughest state and federal restrictions banning having and wearing body armor. These laws prohibit the use of body armor.