MILWAUKEE — Bullet-resistant backpacks are being sold at OfficeMax and Office Depot stores across Milwaukee. The sight of the backpacks doesn't surprise Anna, a Milwaukee mother.
"Maybe not shocked, more frustrated and sad," said Anna.
She has two kids and said she would not purchase these for her family.
"I would rather that we pass sensible gun legislation," said Anna.
Other parents have purchased the backpacks, which cost about $119 for youth sizes and about $190 for adult styles.
This is the first full year the backpacks are available at major retail stores. Guard Dog Security manufactures the backpacks.
"The idea was, how do we create a light backpack that could be potentially life saving and perfect for daily use," said Yasir Sheikh, president of Guard Dog Security.
According to the label, the backpacks are designed to stop a 9mm or a .44 Magnum handgun, but not a high-velocity rifle.
"If you're in an active shooter situation, your first instinct should be to run away from the scenario, take the backpack, yank it over your head and cover your vital organs," said Sheikh.
The key component of the bag is a Kevlar mesh lined in the inside.
"People are always surprised at the ability of Kevlar to minimize damage and penetration," said Adam Campbell, an instructor at Brew City Shooter.
Campbell said the backpack should hold up as advertised.
"There really is no such thing as bulletproof, but depending on the armor you're wearing, it's designed to stop penetration," said Campbell.
At 15 feet, the backpack stopped the 9mm and a .45 Magnum.
"You can see the impact, but I can feel the round in there It did not penetrate with a 45," said Campbell.
"There really is no such thing as bulletproof, but depending on the armor you're wearing, it's designed to stop penetration." — Adam Campbell, instructor at Brew City Shooter
We then tested the backpack with a high-velocity rifle, but the bullet went straight through.
Sheikh said this is not the ultimate solution, but it's their way of taking a proactive approach on safety.
"This product is not the answer to all the problems. This is just one of the products a parent-child or consumer needs to think about when they are thinking of safety or school safety," said Sheikh.