Public Chapter 321

SENATE BILL NO. 315

By Herron, Leatherwood

Substituted for: House Bill No. 1275

By Sherry Jones, Pruitt, Langster, Odom, Garrett, Boner, Robinson, West, Huskey, Kent, Ridgeway

AN ACT To amend Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 39, Chapter 17, Part 13, relative to crimes committed while wearing a bullet-proof or bullet-resistant vest.

BE IT ENACTED BY THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF TENNESSEE:

SECTION 1. Tennessee Code Annotated, Title 39, Chapter 17, Part 13, is amended by adding the following new section:

Section ___. (a) A person commits an offense who knowingly wears a body vest, when acting either alone or with one or more other persons, while committing:

(1) any felony whose statutory elements involve the use or threat of violence to a human being;

(2) any burglary, car-jacking, theft of a motor vehicle, or arson; or

(3) any felony offense involving a controlled substance.

(b) For purposes of this section, a "body vest" means a bullet-resistant soft armor providing, as a minimum standard, the level of protection known as threat level I which shall mean at least seven (7) layers of bullet-resistant material providing protection from three (3) shots of one hundred fifty-eight (158) grain lead ammunition fired from a .38 caliber handgun at a velocity of eight hundred fifty (850) feet per second.

(c) The unlawful wearing of a body vest is a Class E felony.

(d) Nothing in this section shall prohibit the possession of a body vest for lawful purposes.

(e) Any sentence imposed under this act shall run consecutively to any other sentence imposed for the conviction of the underlying offense.

SECTION 2. This act shall take effect upon becoming a law, the public welfare requiring it.