Saves!


Body armor saves lives. When law enforcement and corrections officers are confronted with gunfire or stab assaults on the job, they are more likely to survive when wearing properly fitting body armor. Here is a collection of survival stories reported in the news media.

September 13, 2017: -An Oregon State Trooper who was shot during a traffic stop, was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

September 6, 2017: - A Fresno, CA police officer was stabbed in the chest and saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

August 30, 2017: - A Louisiana deputy, shot during a traffic stop, was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

August 29, 2017: - A New Mexico State Police Officer who was shot by a handcuffed suspect, was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

August 11, 2017: - A NYPD officer was shot three times and was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

July 3, 2017: - A police officer in Norfolk, VA was shot Sunday and was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

Save News Archive

June 29, 2017: - A McCreary County (Kentucky) deputy, shot while pursuing a motorcyclist, was saved by wearing his body armor. See the story here.

June 21, 2017: - Two Coffee County (TN) deputies shot by an inmate at the county courthouse survived. One was saved by his body armor. Read the story here.

June 19, 2017: - A Hall County (GA) Sheriff’s deputy shot during a home invasion call was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

June 13, 2017: - A Hampton, Virginia police officer was shot by a burglary suspect. He was saved by wearing his body armor. See the story here.

June 13, 2017: Two Kentucky police officers were shot while serving a warrant. Both survived. Body armor prevented one officer from sustaining serious injury. Read the story here.

June 12, 2017: - A police officer in Prattville, Alabama was shot while responding to a domestic violence call. His body armor saved him. Read the story here.

June 5, 2017: - A Riverside County (CA) sheriff’s deputy was shot 5 times. He survived because he was wearing his ballistic body armor. Read the story here.

May 30, 2017: - Two officers survived a shooting in College Park, Georgia over the weekend. One was saved by his body armor. The suspected shooter is still being sought. Find details here.

May 12, 2017: - A Chicago police officer who was shot in the chest was saved by wearing his body armor. Details here.

April 27, 2017: - A Banks County (Georgia) Sheriff’s deputy was shot after pulling over an armed robbery suspect.  He was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

April 21, 2017: - Three Seattle police officers were injured in a shooting following a robbery. One of the suspects was killed. One of the police officers was saved by wearing her body armor. Read more here.

March 28, 2017: - An Anderson, California police officer was saved by wearing his ballistic vest. Read more about the incident here.

March 16, 2017: - Two Detroit police officers are expected to recover after being shot during an investigation. One of the officers was struck twice in the chest. He is ballistic resistant body armor stopped the bullets. Read more here.

March 16, 2017: - A San Bernardino California sheriff’s deputy was shot by a robbery suspect and survived. He was wearing his ballistic resistant vest and it is credited with saving his life. Read more here.

January 3, 2017: - Two Texas law enforcement officers were saved by wearing body armor in two separate shooting incidents. Read more here.

December 15, 2016: - An Indiana police officer was shot in the chest, and sustained only minor injuries because he was wearing his vest. Read the story here.

December 14, 2016: - A Georgia police officer is recovering after a shooting during a drug investigation. He was shot in the arm and the chest. He was wearing his body armor and it is credited with preventing serious injury. Read the story here.

December 13, 2016: - A police officer in Leland, NC survived a shooting during a traffic encounter with a suspected drunk driver. His body armor is credited with saving his life. Read the story here.

November 10, 2016: - A New York police officer who struggled with a burglary suspect after a foot pursuit, was saved from a knife attack by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

October 22, 2016: - A Columbus, Georgia police officer who was shot during a burglary investigation was saved by wearing his ballistic-resistant vest. Read the story here.

October 20, 2016:- A Paris, (KY) Police Officer was shot Tuesday night inside a home while trying to make contact with an individual. He was wearing his body armor which is being credited with saving his life. A standoff ensued at the residence. Read the story here.

September 30, 2016: - A Willcox (AR) Police Officer was shot after a traffic-related incident and pursuit. He was wearing his body armor which prevented serious injury. The shooter was also shot and apprehended. Read the story here.

September 21, 2016: - One of the police officers who apprehended the bombing suspect in New York/New Jersey was shot during the encounter. He was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

September 17, 2016: - Two Forth Worth (TX) police officers survived a shooting at a home on Friday. Both were wearing their body armor when they responded to a call to check on a suicide report.  Read the story here.

September 17, 2016: - Two police officers were among 7 shot in in Philadelphia Friday night. One officer, ambushed in her car by the shooter, was hit several times. Her body armor is credited with saving her. A civilian and the shooter were killed. Read the story here.

August 9, 2016: - An Oregon police officer who was shot by a fleeing suspect after a traffic stop was saved by wearing is ballistic vest. The suspect took a hostage and was eventually shot by police. Read the story here.

July 26, 2016: - Cleveland Metroparks Ranger Chelsea McLellan was shot by a suspect who had smuggled a gun into the back of her police cruiser. As she was transporting him to jail, the suspect began shooting and she was struck in the shoulder. Her ballistic body armor is credited with saving her life.  http://bit.ly/2aimlZ2

July 17, 2016: - Milwaukee police officer Brandon Baranowski was shot as he sat in his squad car while fellow officers investigated a domestic disturbance. His assistant police chief says Baranowski was saved by wearing his ballistic body armor. http://bit.ly/29Oi2nO

July 5, 2016: - A North Charleston, SC police officer was shot during a standoff with a suspect who had allegedly tried to run over a pedestrian with a car. Officer Wayne Pavlischek was wearing his ballistic vest. He was transported to a local hospital and was treated for non-life threatening injuries. Read the story here.

June 28, 2016: - A Boise Police officer was shot in the chest during a shootout with a suspect. He sustained nonlife-threatening injuries and was taken to a local hospital. Authorities say he was saved by wearing his body armor. Read the story here.

June 24, 2016: - Folcroft (PA) Police Officer Christopher Dorman survived being shot 7 times and is expected to fully recover. Several bullets struck his ballistic vest, and officials say the body armor likely saved his life. Four people are in custody following the shooting. Read the story here.

June 14, 2016: - A Louisville, KY police officer survived a shooting at close range. His chief credits the fact that Officer Kyle Carroll was wearing his ballistic body armor with saving his life. Read the story here.

June 14, 2016: - An Orlando, FL police officer was saved by wearing his ballistic helmet. Orlando police identified Michael Napolitano as one of the officers who responded to the attack at the Pulse nightclub Sunday morning, in which at least 49 were killed. His helmet was punctured by a bullet and is being crediting with saving his life. Read the story here.

June 8, 2016: - A Stafford County (Virginia) Sheriff’s deputy was shot four times while responding to a breaking and entering call. He suffered extensive injuries but survived and the shooter was apprehended and charged with attempted capital murder.  The sheriff’s office says the deputy’s ballistic body armor saved his life. http://wtvr.com/2016/06/08/stafford-deputy-shot/

June 5, 2015: - An Atlanta police officer, responding to a home invasion call, was shot in the abdomen. He managed to return fire and two suspects are in custody. The unnamed officer is recovering at an area hospital. Officials are citing the fact that he was wearing his ballistic body armor as saving his life. He is expected to recover and head home soon. Read the story here .

March 28, 2016: - Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Lt. Andy Harris was wearing his bullet-resistant vest when he was shot Saturday, March 26, 2016. His vest is credited with preventing serious injury. Read the story here .

March 26, 2016: - A police officer was shot while responding to a report of an altercation outside a Tampa, Florida hotel. He was wearing his ballistic vest and it is credited with saving his life. Read more here .

March 9, 2016: - A Jacksonville, Florida detective survived a shooting Wednesday during a traffic stop. He was wearing his body armor and it is likely that it saved his life. More details about the shooting, the detective and the arrest of the suspect are available here .

A Lawrence County (Illinois) deputy was shot during a traffic stop on February 22, 2016. Because he was wearing his body armor, he survived the shooting. The accused shooter is recovering from a gunshot wound and has been charged with attempted first degree murder of a police officer. Read more here: http://www.officer.com/news/12173757/shot-illinois-deputy-saved-by-bulletproof-vest

Aug. 25, 2015: For the second time in less than a week, a Mississippi law enforcement officer’s life was saved by his ballistic-resistant vest when shot at during a traffic stop. As the Monroe County Deputy approached a motorcycle, the sole occupant began shooting at the officer. A bullet struck the deputy in the vest and knocked him to the ground. More

Officer shot twice during scuffle, bulletproof vest stops one bullet - Aug. 19, 2015: CORINTH, MS (WMC)

A Corinth, Mississippi, police officer is in the hospital after getting shot with his own weapon during a scuffle with a possible prowler.

Corinth Police Chief Ralph Dance said Officer Kevin Parker Jr. was investigating the prowler call at a woman's home around 4 Wednesday morning.

Parker saw a man run out in front of his car. When he went to investigate, the man rushed Parker and fought to get his gun. More

Just before dawn on July 13, 2015, a 39-year-old sergeant with the St. Louis Police Department was treated and released from a local hospital after shots fired during an ambush were stopped by his ballistic-resistant vest. The officer was off-duty but wearing his uniform while working a second job in neighborhood security when a car carrying four men pulled up beside his unmarked personal vehicle, and one man got out and opened fire. There had been no previous contact between the officer and the suspect, who fled the scene on foot after the sergeant fired back. The car’s driver was arrested later in the day and one of the passengers turned himself in. Read more here .

April 17, 2015 - After responding to a “911 Hang-up” call, Deputy Joseph Tortorella of the Niagara County, NY Sheriff’s Office encountered a male subject who seemed unstable. The subject was being taken into custody, when he pulled a gun from his pocket and shot the Deputy as he was attempting to take cover.  One bullet struck the Deputy’s protective vest, which saved him from serious injury. More

In a Tuesday, March 10 incident, officers from the Cleveland, Ohio Police Department  entered a home and encountered a man who immediately began shooting at them. One officer was struck in the chest and suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Ten days later on Saturday, March 21, Orleans County, N.Y. sheriff’s deputies arrived at the scene of the original incident after the suspect had left the area. More

Ballistic Vest Saves Officer from Injury
A disturbance call in Randolph County, NC turned violent when a person exited a residence and stabbed an officer in the chest.  Although there are no guarantees that ballistic-resistant vests will provide protection against edged-weapons, in many cases, as was the case in Randolph County, the vest was damaged and needed to be replaced, but the officer suffered no serious injuries. Video: NC suspect attacks deputy with knife

BVP Program Saves Lives! Law enforcement officers face life-threatening perils every day. In two separate incidents this month, officers in Ohio and New York were wounded by gunfire and survived after responding to reports of domestic violence and threats to use a firearm to harm others.

In a Tuesday, March 10 incident, officers from the Cleveland, Ohio Police Department  entered a home and encountered a man who immediately began shooting at them. One officer was struck in the chest and suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Ten days later on Saturday, March 21, Orleans County, N.Y. sheriff’s deputies arrived at the scene of the original incident after the suspect had left the area. More

Lewisburg, WV Officers Survive Deadly Assault
The unimaginable happened January 1, 2015, when Lt. Jeromy Dove, a 16-year veteran of the Lewisburg Police Department and Patrolman Nicholas Sams, barely three weeks out of the police academy, made what they considered to be a routine traffic stop. Unknown to the officers, there were two dead bodies in the bed of the pick-up truck they stopped and the driver opened fire on the officers. Both officers survived the deadly assault because the ballistic-resistant vests they were wearing, stopped the bullets. Funds from the Bulletproof Vest Partnership program, administered by the Bureau of Justice Assistance, had been used to purchase the vests.

Bullet-resistant Vest Saved North Charleston Officer’s Life
On Jan. 14, 2012, after leaving the scene of a home theft, Officer David Winslette of the North Charleston (S.C.) Police Department approached a subject who fit the description of the subject involved in the theft. Without warning, the subject opened fire on the officer; two of the shots struck the officer. If not for the bullet-resistant vest that Officer Winslette was wearing that night, the incident would have ended much differently and Officer Winslette would not be able to tell about the incident.

A Hero Saved by His Protective Vest
“Obviously, I realize how fortunate I am to even be alive. I don’t know why, and I don’t think I’ll ever know why, but I’ve come to terms with the fact that I am extremely lucky, and I’m just so happy to be here. Even being in pain is OK because it means that at least I’m still alive.” - Lt. Brian Murphy, Retired – Oak Creek (Wis.) Police Department, who survived the Oak Creek Massacre on Aug. 5, 2012. The ballistic vest that Lt. Murphy was wearing that day, stopped three rounds any of which could have caused fatal injuries.

2 officers shot near Denver recovering
Officers' vests "played a key role" in saving their lives.

HPD: Bullet-proof vest saves officer's life in north Houston shooting
Click here for story.

Interview with Kyle Russel

Officer Kyle Russel
Alexandria, Va., Police Department
Las Vegas SHOT Show
Orlando, Fla.
January 15-18, 2009

Stockton: Hi, I’m Dale Stockton, editor of Law Officer Magazine. We’re at the Orlando SHOT Show, and with me today is Kyle Russel of the Alexandria, Va., Police Department. Officer Russel this last year had an incident where his vest saved his life, and we’re going to talk to him about that. So Kyle, tell us what happened.

Russel: I’m a field training officer and I was training a brand-new officer that night. We were actually on 395 a stretch of highway right outside of Washington, D.C. We’d been on a call out of our area and we were on our way back to our beat. And a Lexus, brand-new car, flew past us on the highway, all over the road. Very erratic, very high speeds, like running cars off the road, somehow managed to not hit anybody. We lit it up. Eventually, he pulled over. He kept going on a little ways, he kept slowing down, speeding up. Very strange, and eventually he went from the far left lane all the way to the right. Slammed on his brakes. I told my rookie officer to mark “out” with a possibly intoxicated driver. I had already hopped out the car, I had a weird feeling about it. I wanted to make sure I got the keys from the drive. I suspected he was either highly highly intoxicated or having a diabetic seizure and was going into shock. I approached the car on the passenger side on the highway, I really don’t like a driver side approach on the highway, and I looked back to see where my rookie officer was and he was just getting out of his vehicle. I approached the car and I looked in with my light. His hands were on his lap and he was vomiting from the mouth, he had blood on his face. I looked in and I said “hey man, are you okay?” and he looked up at me and growled and said like “Hi,” while he looked at me and he reached under his leg and shot me once in the chest. Forty-five caliber round, hit me right here. I knew I was hit immediately, fortunately I was able to duck back. There was a guardrail on the side and I dove for the guardrail for some cover. I figured he was going to get out of the car and engage me so I wanted to have a little bit of cover. I drew my weapon and I looked back up. He had immediately fled. He was probably about 25 30 yard up the highway flying. I marked out with all the information on the vehicle. My rookie gave the state the tag. I gave the driver information and everything about it. And a little ways down the road he shot himself in the head. They actually went to make notification to his wife that he had shot a police officer and killed himself and it was at that time that they realized she had been murdered. She was later found by him inside the apartment right before I pulled him over. We had no idea that had happened. In the car, we found not only the .45 caliber he shot me with but a Bushmaster M4 and he had several loaded magazines, locked and loaded, and he had recently just been discharged from the Old Guard unit in the military. So that was the direction he was heading, on 395.

Stockton: You wear your vest all the time?

Russel: All the time. I never go to work without it. There’s absolutely no doubt in my mind that if I hadn’t been wearing that vest, there’s no way I would be alive. A round in the chest like that, they said it would have missed my heart by about two inches. There’s no way I would have lived through it.

Stockton: What do you say to the guys that say “I carry it in the car; it gets too hot; if I need it, I’ll put it on” ?

Russel: I mean, that’s the dumbest thing you could ever say. I mean, I’m living proof, that’s the reason, you never know when it could be your day. And that was just a normal day for us. It was a Tuesday night. You never know what’s going to happen. What would you rather be, too hot or be alive? But I always wear mine, and everybody with Safariland and [unintelligible] and Second Chance, I really thank them for saving my life.

Stockton: Well, we can’t thank you enough for what you do. We really appreciate you being here today.

Russel: Thank you very much.