YORK COUNTY, Pa. (WHTM) – The Northern York County Regional Police Department is getting new technology to apprehend suspects in a safer way, at a time when police departments are under increased scrutiny.
The department is getting BolaWraps which are described as remote handcuffs. They’re one of the only tools police can use to apprehend a suspect from a distance without causing any pain.
“It’s an unknown entity right now in York County and Central Pennsylvania in general,” said Chief David Lash, Northern York County Regional Police Department.
Patrol supervisors with the Northern York County Regional Police Department received training Monday with the BolaWraps.
“It’s a remote restraint device. It shoots out a kevlar impregnated rope that has fishing hooks at either end, that can wrap around a person’s legs or torso to temporarily immobilize them, so our officers can safely approach and make an arrest with a minimum amount of force,” said Chief Lash.
It can be used at a range of 10 to 25 feet.
“I envision this being used on emotionally disturbed people, people indicating they want to harm themselves who are non-compliant with an officer’s commands or other deescalation techniques,” said Chief Lash.
Several state elected officials showed up as well to see how it works.
“We want to have an open, transparent conversation with our communities,” said Chief Lash.
At a time when law enforcement is under increased scrutiny, police believe this tool is a win-win.
“It protects the people we’re potentially using force on, and it protects our officers from having to become injured while using force,” said Chief Lash.
The police department will start using the BolaWraps next week for a 90 day trial period. After that, they’ll decide if they want to purchase them for the force.