Police chief offered prophetic words about bulletproof vests in November | PostIndependent.com

Police chief offered prophetic words about bulletproof vests in November

GLENWOOD SPRINGS, Colo. ” Following the news that Colorado State Trooper Brian Koch was shot on the night of Oct. 24 near Silt, Glenwood Springs Police Chief Terry Wilson would later offer some rather prophetic words.

For a Post Independent story, Wilson was asked about the importance of a bulletproof vest. He said, “(Bulletproof vests) regularly contribute to saving lives of law enforcement officers.”

That appears to have been the case last night when a Glenwood officer was shot once in the chest while confronting two men south of the Glenwood Springs Airport.

In that same story, Wilson said that “It’s not required by law, but most of our (officers) wear them. That is one of the differences we’ve noticed over the last 20 years. If we don’t have 100 percent of (officers) wearing them, it’s really, really close to it.”

Bulletproof vests were once cumbersome and awkward but today’s vest’s are lighter and more comfortable to wear.

The vests are made of Kevlar, a strong weave of fiber material that essentially traps a bullet and repels it, Wilson said.

“There are grades of thickness that are intended for the shape and size of the bullet to penetration versus the point of contact,” Wilson said in the Nov. 1, 2006 article. “There are all kinds of styles, depending on what you’re doing.

“If you’re in something that is so ungodly uncomfortable, it’s hard,” Wilson said. “But technology has made these things so much more wearable and made it so officers will wear them,” he said then.

Two suspects are still at large in last night’s the shooting.

It was originally believed Koch was shot three times but was later revealed that the trooper was shot once in the arm and took no bullets directly to the vest. The bullet did change direction after striking the arm and hit the vest.

Steven Appl, who is believed to have shot Koch, committed suicide at a checkpoint the next night.

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