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Posted: 3/4/2006 12:20:29 PM EDT
Zylon Vest Worn By Killed California Officer Under Review


Updated: March 3rd, 2006 11:46 AM EDT



Story by 10News.com



The makers of body armor who are being sued by the widow of a slain Oceanside police officer will be able to view the vest worn by the officer when he was killed, a Vista Superior Court judge ruled Thursday.

Attorneys for Second Chance Body Armor, which made the Ultima II body armor worn by Officer Tony Zeppetella, and Toyobo Co., which manufactured the Zylon fiber inside the vest, said they want to see the position of a bullet hole and the condition of the material.

The 27-year-old officer was shot 13 times during a shootout with an ex-convict in Oceanside on June 13, 2003.

One of the bullets penetrated the body armor and caused a fatal wound, according to testimony in the criminal trial of Adrian Camacho, who was convicted of first-degree murder and, last month, sentenced to death.

A trial in the civil suit, in which Jamie Zeppetella alleges the companies knew that Zylon was ineffective, is scheduled for Aug. 4.

With the criminal trial over, the firms wanted a chance to examine the vest and the fiber inside.

Judge Joan Weber granted their motions, allowing them to view the vest and a mannequin that displays the entry and exit points of Zeppetella's wounds, on March 8. The session will not be open to the public or media.

The attorneys will be allowed to slit open the side of the vest and pull out a panel of material. The vest needs to remain somewhat intact while Camacho pursues his criminal appeals.

"At this point, we're just looking to see if (the bullet) passed through the fiber" instead of surrounding material, said John Griffin, a lawyer in Orange who represents Second Chance Body Armor.

Attorney Greg Emerson, who represents Jamie Zeppetella, said there's a hole in the officer's shirt, a hole in the vest with "an inch-and-a-half blob of Zylon sticking out" and an opening in his chest that all line up.

"It couldn't be any clearer that there's a hole in the vest that caused the fatal injury to Tony," Emerson said.


Second Chance, which was bought by Armor Holdings Inc. last year, and Toyobo, which is based in Japan, appear to be blaming each other for the vest's failure, Emerson said.

It was known by 2003 that Zylon deteriorated rapidly when exposed to light, heat and humidity, but Second Chance continued to sell vests that contained the fiber, the lawyer said.

Jamie Zeppetella wants to hold those responsible for her husband's death accountable and will press forward with the lawsuit, he said.

She settled with a distributor of the vest for $165,000 but declined to sue the Oceanside Police Department or the city of Oceanside, Emerson said.

Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:26:38 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15fan:
Zylon Vest Worn By Killed California Officer Under Review


Updated: March 3rd, 2006 11:46 AM EDT



Story by 10News.com

snip

Jamie Zeppetella wants to hold those with the deepest pockets responsible for her husband's death accountable and will press forward with the lawsuit, he said.

She settled with a distributor of the vest for $165,000 but declined to sue the Oceanside Police Department or the city of Oceanside, Emerson said.


Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:29:57 PM EDT
How many bullets total did the vest absorb? I thought they were only supposed to taken one or two? Getting hit 13 times, I think they should invest in more officers AND better equipment.
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:30:45 PM EDT

Jamie Zeppetella wants to hold those with the deepest pockets responsible for her husband's death accountable and will press forward with the lawsuit, he said.

She settled with a distributor of the vest for $165,000 but declined to sue the Oceanside Police Department or the city of Oceanside, Emerson said.


^
What he said/implied.

$$$
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:30:56 PM EDT
Shot 13 times and only one bullet penetrated!!


OH!! But it's the manufacturers fault!

Yeah Right!!
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:35:33 PM EDT
The vest performed like it was supposed to. The multiple shots shredded the Zylon and the last bullet penetrated. Once the vest has been compromised with a shot all bets are off.

Second, bullets will cause the material to pocket and pull the material toward the center of the hit. Then the Zylon again is not as effective as the material in the other parts of the vest is no longer in the original position.

Thank God for lawyers.
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:38:59 PM EDT
the sad thing is she'll probably win, and the payout will end up costing R&D money that could have been used to improve the already pretty good product, thus potentially costing another officer his life
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:45:38 PM EDT
They will settle because its CHEAPER to settle then to the defend the case. The lawyers are suing for a 1/3 of the action so the plantiff has nothing at risk. Experts and defending a case is very expensive so the company will settle.

Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:45:56 PM EDT
So is Zylon actually good? Or is the whole thing just a legal stunt to get $$$?

Is this one officers death the WHOLE reason why Zylon is not used?

Are more details available, like was the killing shot the 13th shot, or was the killing shot in an area not protected. Because anyway you slice it 13 shots is ALOT of hits, and frankly I would be surprised if the officer DID survive.

Please don't tell me the whole controversy is over this ONE case that looks extreeme anyway you look at it, and with a plaintiff who is only trying to line their pockets. Be a major pitty if it was and may be worth getting the "worthless" zylon vests at a discount? Not sure but more info would be great.
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 12:59:03 PM EDT
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 1:04:45 PM EDT
There has been bad reports about Zylon for some time now .

I would look to something else myself.
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 1:26:14 PM EDT
What was he shot with?

Link Posted: 3/4/2006 1:31:56 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/4/2006 1:42:33 PM EDT by warlord]

Originally Posted By ARDOC:
The vest performed like it was supposed to. The multiple shots shredded the Zylon and the last bullet penetrated. Once the vest has been compromised with a shot all bets are off.

Second, bullets will cause the material to pocket and pull the material toward the center of the hit. Then the Zylon again is not as effective as the material in the other parts of the vest is no longer in the original position.

Thank God for lawyers.


I was at a vest demo for the PD use at the Burbank PD(15 miles n. of Los Angeles) range a number of years ago, and mosts vest are only rated to be hit twice, after that there is no gurantee for reasons as you stated above.
Link Posted: 3/4/2006 1:37:40 PM EDT
13 rounds and ONE, count em, ONE bullet penetrated the vest. If zylon has a problem, it was not exhibited in this vest. To bad his widow and bottomfeeder feel they need to score some $$$$ after a criminal shot a cop 13 times.

It's a bullet RESISTANT vest, not a bullet PROOF vest. I would not give em a damn dime if I was on the jury, and I know all about the problems with the material. This one did NOT fail.
Link Posted: 3/5/2006 3:58:00 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
the sad thing is she'll probably win..



She should win. The manufacturer of Zylon told second chance that the fabric rapidly deteriorates for exposure to heat, hunidity, sweat ansd sunlight yet they continued to manufacture and sell vests made from it. without telling customers/end users.
Link Posted: 3/5/2006 3:59:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By dread-pirate:
So is Zylon actually good?


Nope. Its been common knowledge for over a year that Zylon is not sutable for soft body armor. Second chance declared bankruptcy already over the Zylon issue.
Link Posted: 3/5/2006 4:10:44 PM EDT

Originally Posted By AR15fan:

Originally Posted By Napoleon_Tanerite:
the sad thing is she'll probably win..



She should win. The manufacturer of Zylon told second chance that the fabric rapidly deteriorates for exposure to heat, hunidity, sweat ansd sunlight yet they continued to manufacture and sell vests made from it. without telling customers/end users.



There were Zylon vests being advertised in Stryker catalog last fall and winter. 2nd chance was one of the first manufacturers to pull the material completely.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:25:20 AM EDT
Isn't the NIJ standard only 5 rounds? If so, that should be a pretty good defense. It stopped over twice the NIJ's requirement before failing.
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 2:57:04 AM EDT
The police officer must have been in a pretty bad place to end up holding still long enough for 13 rounds to hit him.

Link Posted: 3/6/2006 3:01:18 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Unicorn:
Isn't the NIJ standard only 5 rounds? If so, that should be a pretty good defense. It stopped over twice the NIJ's requirement before failing.



+1


13 times.......I'd agree the vest did its job.

But too bad the BG got the jump on the officer.

Anyone know the circumstances to the shooting......13 times, was it a MG?
Link Posted: 3/6/2006 4:02:09 AM EDT
RIP officer.
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