State Atty. Gen. Jerry Brown has come out against a recent appellate court judgment overturning a law that bars violent felons from possessing body armor. His office will petition the state Supreme Court next month to review the decision, his office said Tuesday.
"Every day, California's law enforcement officers put their lives on the line to protect our communities," Brown said in a prepared statement. "Allowing violent felons to possess military-grade body armor puts their lives further at risk and jeopardizes public safety."
The petition to the state Supreme Court will be filed by mid-January, according to Brown's staff.
The court is not obligated to review the decision, but law enforcement groups nonetheless hailed Brown's announcement.
"We're extremely happy that he decided to appeal that decision," said Paul Weber, president of the Los Angeles Police Protective League, the union for LAPD officers. "We're talking about serious, hard-core criminals. They're violent offenders, and they want to have a tactical advantage over the police."
The decade-old ban was enacted after the 1997 North Hollywood shootout, a confrontation between Los Angeles police and two heavily armed and armored bank robbers that received wide media coverage. The state Legislature passed the law in 1998 as a measure to protect police.