A device created to help police restrain people without hurting them is being tested by police in Virginia’s Fairfax County.
BolaWrap, a low-level, lasso-like control device, allows a police officer to shoot a Kevlar tether at someone from as far as 25 feet away.
Depending on where the officer aims, the tether can tightly wrap around a person’s legs or arms — think Wonder Woman’s “Lasso of Truth.”
It’s meant to help officers safely control uncooperative suspects or people experiencing mental health emergencies.
“FCPD continues to seek the latest advancements in our profession to prepare our officers for situations they encounter. Every day, officers utilize verbal skills and de-escalation tactics to resolve situations peacefully. The BolaWrap device provides another potential tool for officers to safely take someone into custody when individuals present harm to themselves or others,” said Maj. Brooke Wright, director of the Criminal Justice Academy.
Fairfax County police have already assigned BolaWrap devices to about 30 officers. Those officers will require training before they will be allowed to use the devices, according to a news release.
The department’s pilot program will run through April of next year.
Another police department in Bladensburg, Maryland, has been using BolaWrap devices since last year.
See how Bladensburg police used it to restrain someone in crisis: