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Retailers selling bulletproof backpacks; are parents considering the purchase?

August 01, 2019 11:40 PM

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) -- It's almost time for students to head back to school and safety is still in the spotlight.

Now, there's a new tool on the market that makers say is designed to help protect your children. Guard Dog Security, a Florida-based company, has designed bulletproof backpacks.

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The president of Guard Dog Security, Yasir Sheikh, says he doesn't believe this tool will stop shootings, instead he sees the backpacks as a safety precaution.

"They're protected against 9mm and .44 magnums," Sheikh said. "You have your back against the shooter, pull it over your head, cover your back and cover your vital organs."

The backpacks are sold on the company's website as well other major retailers like Office Depot and Walmart. There are several styles starting at $120.

"Would I get one? Probably not," Parent Tracey Dunn said. "I don't want to scare my 11-year-old but she's very much aware of what's going on."

In February of 2018, a 19-year-old with a semi-automatic rifle killed 17 students and staff and injured more than a dozen others at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

In December of 2012, a 20-year-old killed 20 children and six adults at Sandy Hook Elementary in Sandy Hook, Connecticut.

It's tragedies like these that have some parents considering the purchase of bulletproof backpacks.

"I think it's a good idea," parent Carl Ursulom said, "especially with me having a four-year-old daughter, you just never know what could happen."

On Monday night, when Congressman Joe Morelle hosted a local town hall discussion on guns, News10NBC asked what he thought about the backpacks. 

"I think it speaks volumes about the kind of society that we're in that people would even consider needing such a thing," Morelle said. "We have to work to make... a high priority in the United States sensible gun control, universal background checks and an end to military-style assault weapons."

And even though school is just a month away, some parents are still unsure of whether they are going to buy the backpack.

"I say yes and no to this," parent Haydee Verdjo said. "I feel like we should put our money towards other stuff that should be safer for our kids."

As of Thursday night, Office Depot at Clarence Mall in Williamsville has the backpacks in stock for $174.

Credits

Kaci Jones

Copyright 2019 - WHEC-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

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