“prohibited item” was the subject line of an email I received recently.
The body of the message contained just one line, “do you know that body armor is not legal to own in pa.unless you are a police officer?”
In fact, I didn’t know that. I was about to reply to that effect, but I realized that there must be more to it. My best guess was that they had seen some sort of body armor on the Pennswoods.net Classifieds, and wanted me to be alerted to what they believed to be a contraband item.
Well I’ve already confessed that at the time I received the email, I didn’t really know a lot about the legality of body armor in Pennsylvania. I thought it likely that it was legal to possess, and I’d looked at buying some myself in the past. Frankly the price is a bit much for what would be a novelty item for me. Sitting at a desk typing code doesn’t really and doing some marketing hardly offers a need for body armor, thanks be to God!
I did a couple of online searches before answering. What I found was interesting, and I’ve provided my response in entirety here, in case it proves interesting to others. I’m not a lawyer. What follows is not a meaningful opinion on the legality of body armor. And if you think my printing a link indicates that I endorse a product that is sold on one of those web pages, you might want to invest in an AFDB as well.
I’m not aware of any laws prohibiting body armor in PA.
Apparently there are some laws against felons owning it.
Being a purely defensive item, it seems unlikely to be banned anytime soon.
I saw a few references to some states considering the use of body
armor during a crime to be a separate crime. Sort of like how most
states consider the use of lock picks to commit burglary (or any other
crime) to be a crime separate from the burglary, but otherwise
lockpicks are an unregulated locksmith tool. Of course bolt cutters
are usually faster and cheaper, so I suppose regulating lockpicks
wouldn’t be worth it.
Anyway, no, I’m not aware of any ban on body armor ownership in PA.
Several companies will gladly ship into PA, including Amazon.
I’ve thought about buying some myself, but it tends to run into
several hundred dollars for the lighter stuff, and it’d be one more
thing sitting around cluttering my basement.
I’m assuming you were concerned over someone selling body armor on the
site. If you were asking if it is legal for you to buy it from some
one else, probably, as far as I know, unless you’ve got a felony
record and PA has changed its laws recently. Be on the look out for
bullet holes, knife slashes, and wear. I expect body armor to be like
bicycle helmets. If it takes a hit once, trash it and buy new.
If you have body armor and are asking if you can sell it, again
probably, as far as I know. You are responsible for making sure you
obey the law. I don’t have any issue with it on the site.
Ads are archived after expiration in case law enforcement requests it.