2009 California Penal Code - Section 12360-12370 :: Chapter 3.5. Body Armour Certification

PENAL CODE
SECTION 12360-12370

12360.  No body armor shall be acquired by the commissioner pursuant
to Section 2259.5 of the Vehicle Code unless, pursuant to
subdivision (a) of Section 12361, the Department of Justice has
certified such body armor.

12361.  (a) Before a body armor may be purchased for use by state
peace officers the Department of Justice, after consultation with the
Department of the California Highway Patrol, shall establish minimum
ballistic performance standards, and shall determine that the armor
satisfies those standards.
   (b) Only body armor that meets state requirements under
subdivision (a) for acquisition or purchase shall be eligible for
testing for certification under the ballistic performance standards
established by the Department of Justice; and only body armor that is
certified as acceptable by the department shall be purchased for use
by state peace officers.

12362.  Any person engaged in the manufacture or sale of body armor
may apply to the Department of Justice for certification that a
particular type of body armor manufactured or sold by that person is
acceptable. The applicant shall reimburse the state for any actual
expenses incurred by the state in testing and certifying a particular
type of body armor.

12363.  Any application submitted pursuant to Section 12362 shall
contain all of the following:
   (a) Full written reports of any investigation conducted for the
purpose of determining whether such body armor is acceptable.
   (b) A full written statement of the design of such body armor.
   (c) A full written statement of the methods used in, and the
facilities and controls used for, the manufacture of such body armor.
   (d) Such samples of body armor and its components as the
department may require.
   (e) Specimens of the instructions and advertisements used or
proposed to be used for such body armor.

12364.  The Department of Justice, in cooperation with the Office of
Procurement of the Department of General Services, shall establish a
schedule for ballistic testing for certification pursuant to
subdivision (b) of Section 12361.

12365.  The department shall issue an order refusing to certify a
body armor as acceptable if, after due notice to the applicant, the
department finds any of the following:
   (a) That the body armor does not satisfy the ballistic performance
standards established by the department pursuant to subdivision (b)
of Section 12361.
   (b) That the application contains any misrepresentation of a
material fact.
   (c) That the application is materially incomplete.
   (d) That the applicant has failed to reimburse the state as
required by Section 12362.

12366.  The department shall issue an order revoking certification
if, after due notice to the applicant, the department finds any of
the following:
   (a) That the experience or additional testing show that the body
armor does not comply with the department's ballistic performance
standards.
   (b) That the application contains any misrepresentation of a
material fact.
   (c) The body armor must be retested for certification under new
department standards.

12367.  The department shall adopt and promulgate regulations for
the fair and efficient enforcement of this chapter.

12368.  (a) All purchases of certified body armor under the
provisions of this chapter shall be made by the Department of General
Services on behalf of an authorized state agency or department.
Purchases of body armor shall be based upon written requests
submitted by an authorized state agency or department to the
Department of General Services.
   (b) The Department of General Services shall make certified body
armor available to peace officers of the Department of Justice, as
defined by Section 830.3 of the Penal Code, while engaged in law
enforcement activities.

12369.  The Department of General Services shall, pursuant to
departmental regulation, after consultation with the Department of
the California Highway Patrol, define the term "enforcement
activities" for purposes of this chapter, and develop standards
regarding what constitutes sufficient wear on body armor to
necessitate replacement thereof.

12370.  (a) A person who has been convicted of a violent felony, as
defined in subdivision (c) of Section 667.5, under the laws of the
United States, the State of California, or any other state,
government, or country, who purchases, owns, or possesses body armor,
as defined in subdivision (f), except as authorized under
subdivision (b), is guilty of a felony, punishable by imprisonment in
a state prison for 16 months, or two or three years.
   (b) A person whose employment, livelihood, or safety is dependent
on the ability to legally possess and use body armor, who is subject
to the prohibition imposed by subdivision (a) due to a prior violent
felony conviction, may file a petition with the chief of police or
county sheriff of the jurisdiction in which he or she seeks to
possess and use the body armor for an exception to this prohibition.
The chief of police or sheriff may reduce or eliminate the
prohibition, impose conditions on reduction or elimination of the
prohibition, or otherwise grant relief from the prohibition as he or
she deems appropriate, based on the following:
   (1) A finding that the petitioner is likely to use body armor in a
safe and lawful manner.
   (2) A finding that the petitioner has a reasonable need for this
type of protection under the circumstances.
   In making its decision, the chief of police or sheriff shall
consider the petitioner's continued employment, the interests of
justice, any relevant evidence, and the totality of the
circumstances. It is the intent of the Legislature that law
enforcement officials exercise broad discretion in fashioning
appropriate relief under this paragraph in cases in which relief is
warranted. However, this paragraph may not be construed to require
law enforcement officials to grant relief to any particular
petitioner. Relief from this prohibition does not relieve any other
person or entity from any liability that might otherwise be imposed.
   (c) The chief of police or sheriff shall require, as a condition
of granting an exception under subdivision (b), that the petitioner
agree to maintain on his or her person a certified copy of the law
enforcement official's permission to possess and use body armor,
including any conditions or limitations.
   (d) Law enforcement officials who enforce the prohibition
specified in subdivision (a) against a person who has been granted
relief pursuant to subdivision (b), shall be immune from any
liability for false arrest arising from the enforcement of this
subdivision unless the person has in his or her possession a
certified copy of the permission granting the person relief from the
prohibition, as required by subdivision (c). This immunity from
liability does not relieve any person or entity from any other
liability that might otherwise be imposed.
   (e) For purposes of this section only, "violent felony" refers to
the specific crimes listed in subdivision (c) of Section 667.5, and
to crimes defined under the applicable laws of the United States or
any other state, government, or country that are reasonably
equivalent to the crimes listed in subdivision (c) of Section 667.5.
   (f) For purposes of this section, "body armor" means any
bullet-resistant material intended to provide ballistic and trauma
protection for the person wearing the body armor.


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