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Cops Say Man in Flak Jacket Shot Dead by His Cousin: 'Let's See If It Works'


Cops Say Man in Flak Jacket Shot Dead by His Cousin: 'Let's See If It Works' (Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office/WTSP)

A Florida man faces charges related to the death of his cousin, who cops say he fatally shot while the victim was trying on a flak jacket.

Tampa police found Joaquin Mendez, 23, wearing the protective coat outside a home Saturday night with a gunshot wound to the chest, WTSP reports.

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At the time, police say 24-year-old Alexandro Garibaldi told them he heard a gunshot and then ran outside to find his cousin with the gunshot wound.

A witness, however, reportedly gave cops a different account.

According to the witness's statement, Mendez was trying on the protective vest when he "wondered aloud whether it still worked" Tampa police said in a statement.

That's when Garibaldi allegedly took out a handgun and fired. Police found an entrance wound in the front of the jacket.

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While bulletproof vests are designed to protest wearers from direct hits, a flak jacket is better designed to deflect shrapnel and other indirect hits.

Mendez was taken to a local hospital where he died from his injuries. 

Garibaldi has since been charged with manslaughter and felony possession of a firearm. He was booked into the Hillsborough County Jail.

He remained jailed there without bond on Sunday.

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