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NCJ Number: NCJ 162358     Find in a Library
Title: Evaluation of Pepper Spray, Research in Brief
  Document URL: Text PDF 
Author(s): S M Edwards ; J Granfield ; J Onnen
Corporate Author: International Assoc of Chiefs of Police
United States of America
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 8
  Series: NIJ Research in Brief
  Annotation: A field test of the use of aerosol pepper spray by the Baltimore County (Md.) Police Department from July 1993 to March 1994 revealed that pepper spray is a less-than-lethal weapon that effectively addresses the issues of police officer and citizen injury.
Abstract: The research focused on whether oleoresin capsicum (OC) aerosol can effectively incapacitate humans, including those who are intoxicated, drugged, or mentally disturbed, in confrontations with police. It also examined its impacts on assaults against police, injuries to both police and suspects, complaints about police brutality, and dogs that were attacking or threatening. Results revealed that OC spray successfully incapacitated humans in 156 of 174 (90 percent) confrontations. Individuals were not completely subdued in 18 encounters. Seven of these persons exhibited bizarre behavior that suggested that persons on drugs or mentally troubled may not yield to OC's effects. The rate of decline of assaults on police officers increased after OC was introduced. Use-of-force complaints against the police decreased by 53 percent in the study period, despite reduced personnel and increased the demand for services. No complaints addressed the use of OC. Overall, findings demonstrated that a well-developed OC-spray program can provide operational benefits to the police. Figures and reference notes
Main Term(s): Police policies and procedures
Index Term(s): Police safety ; Arrest and apprehension ; Police equipment ; Assaults on police ; Lawful use of force ; Chemical irritants ; Police defensive training ; Maryland
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
US Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America

US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
United States of America
Grant Number: 92-IJ-CX-K026
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/NCJRS
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Type: Survey
Country: United States of America
Language: English
Note: NIJ Research in Brief, March 1997.
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