Two Arkansas dipsticks nicked after allegedly taking turns to shoot each other while wearing bulletproof vests

Trust th'wife to out them to cops

You have in your possession a bulletproof vest, a firearm, and some beer. As the brews weave their magic, of course you have to make sure the armour works. Right?

It sounds like the setting for a Jackass stunt, but cops claim two Arkansas, US blokes did just that while drinking on their deck.

The pair – 50-year-old Charles Ferris and 36-year-old Christopher Hicks – were arrested on Monday on suspicion of aggravated assault, according to the Northwest Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, and, if the charges prove true, are certainly old enough to know better.

A sheriff's deputy was sent to Mercy Hospital, Benton County, about 11pm on Sunday investigating reports that a man had been shot multiple times while wearing a bullet-resistant vest.

There, he questioned Ferris, who according to a police affidavit had a red mark on his chest.

Ferris spun a yarn that he had been shot six times, once in the chest and five times in the back, while protecting a man he described as his "asset".

But he was ultimately busted by his wife, Leslie.

Cops said she told them that Ferris had been out on the deck drinking with Hicks, their neighbour, when she heard a gunshot.

Rushing out to see what was going on, she said she noticed Ferris had a red mark on his chest. She told police that when he complained to her about the injury, she sent him to hospital.

He had put on a bullet-resistant vest and told Hicks to shoot him with a .22-calibre semi-automatic rifle, according to the affidavit. He said it hurt, which it would.

Then it was Hicks' turn to wear the vest. Angry about getting shot, the affidavit alleged that Ferris "unloaded the clip" – five rounds – into Hicks' back.

Police said none of the rounds had penetrated.

Ferris was released from hospital and nicked, while officers collected Hicks from his home. A gun and vest were seized.

Though prosecutors haven't yet filed formal charges against the duo, their arraignments are scheduled for 13 May before Benton County Circuit Judge Brad Karren.

We asked The Register's resident firearms expert, Gareth Corfield, how stupid a thing this would be for someone to do.

He said: "It's hard to think of anything more boneheadedly stupid than testing a bulletproof vest by putting one on your mate and then shooting him. At least these bozos allegedly only used a .22 rather than something more potent which could have penetrated the thing. These vests are only really intended to stop low-energy pistol shots, not high-velocity rifle ammunition."

Arkansas has a reputation as the cradle of hillbilly culture. Allegations like this suggest that won't change any time soon. ®

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