Is Your Body Armor Helpful or Harmful? 5 Myths About Body Armor are BUSTED by the Experts

Is Your Body Armor Helpful or Harmful? 5 Myths About Body Armor are BUSTED by the Experts
Duration: 60 Minutes
Module 1Resources
Recorded on: 2019-06-05
Unit 1Slide Deck: Is Your Body Armor Helpful or Harmful
Unit 2Workbook: Is Your Body Armor Helpful or Harmful
Unit 3Recording: Is Your Body Armor Helpful or Harmful

The number of law enforcement line of duty deaths is observed to have increased, a significant chunk of these fatalities are from firearms. In 2018 alone, 49 law enforcement officers killed with firearms were recorded. Thus, it is apt to provide the officers with effective defensive equipment that would help in ensuring their safety.

This webinar will unpack details about the latest body armor standards and technology available in the market. Sheriff Steve Levorchick, from Ottawa County, Ohio and Sheriff Andy Louderback from Jackson County, Texas provides their experience with finding their jurisdiction’s body armor providers and their considerations procuring the equipment. Meanwhile, Retired Colonel Sam Johnson, Jason Henkel and Skip Gavorski are from ShotStop Ballistics, an industry leader in developing the lightest, thinnest and strongest advanced armor technologies.

Specifics discussed in this session involve:

  • Facts and figures that provide insights on line of duty deaths, the weapons being used in shootings, and the risk law enforcement officers are subjected into.
  • The different types of materials modern body armor are made of, its characteristics and its benefits and disadvantages.
  • The factors that must be taken into account when choosing the type of body armor to use.
  • Debunking myths surrounding body armors
    • Polyethylene’s ability to stop high-powered rounds which can withstand multiple hits.
    • The tradeoff involved in getting a heavier Level IV body armor versus a lighter Level III body armor that allows better mobility and still meets industry standards for law enforcement protection.
    • The minute difference in pricing per unit of polyethylene body armor versus ceramic ones and the significant disparity between the two when it comes to durability, warranty and maintenance.
    • Soft armor vests’ inability to provide necessary protection to real-life threats.
    • The lies and half-truths presented and spun by some body armor providers at the cost of subpar quality equipment based on the most current NIJ standards.
  • During the Q&A segment of the webinar, the participants raised their comments and inquiries on:
    • The type of body armor that may be deemed adequate for a non-sworn volunteer who goes on ride-alongs.
    • Common issues encountered when allowing officers to procure their own body armor.
    • Grants that may be availed for body armor procurement purposes.
    • The consequences of mistakenly using ICW plates as standalone plates.
    • Whether the body armors underwent testing for mil-spec standards.
    • Tracing the procurement source for body armor being used by perpetrators.
    • The types of injuries that may occur once the armor stops the round.
    • The need for a sprawl liner for ShotStop’s level III and IV plates.


U.S.-based ShotStop® Ballistics is developing the lightest, thinnest, and strongest advanced armor technologies in the world. From body armor plates and armored vehicle protection, to its innovative BallisticBoard™ material and custom armor solutions, ShotStop® Ballistics is leading the way in improving the protection of our police, military, special forces, S.W.A.T., security personnel, and more. With technical expertise that spans more than 35 years, the ShotStop® team brings together engineers, Ph.D.’s, chemists, product developers, and ballistic specialists, to create ballistic technology that saves lives, reduces physical encumbrance, and maximizes performance. ShotStop® consistently uses independent and federally accredited ballistic labs, including the Department of Defense and National Institute of Justice, to ensure ShotStop® armor provides our servicemen and women with the best possible protection.



Audience Comments:

  • “As an analyst, I don’t wear body armor, but I gained a great deal of information from this webinar.”  –Ken
  • “I knew nothing about body armor before this presentation. I’m not sure I’ll need this info in my work, but I AM a much more informed citizen–especially when it comes to voting on budget increases…and why such increases are important & necessary. Thank you!” –L
  • “I learned a lot about the challenges, dangers, and emerging technology to help officers facing these issues today.” –Anthony
  • “It was good to learn about different types of Armour. Being in Canada, there are a lot of different factors which would need to be covered on a different platform. Overall, a good presentation with interesting data.” –Justin
  • “Real world feedback and stories from many of the experienced speakers in attendance. Field experience is the most valuable I feel and you had an excellent mix of LE and military leadership. Very informative.” –David


Additional Resources
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After the Webinar: Is Your Body Armor Helpful or Harmful? Q&A with the Presenters
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