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NCJ Number: 207836 Find in a Library
Title: Defusing Dangerous Encounters: Less-Lethal Options Exist to Bring Tragic Situations to a Safer Conclusion
Journal: Law Enforcement Technology  Volume:31  Issue:10  Dated:October 2004  Pages:150,152-154,156
Author(s): Darrell Laurant
Date Published: October 2004
Page Count: 5
Type: Issue Overview
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article discusses the benefits and drawbacks of less-lethal weapons.
Abstract: In 1985, the U.S. Supreme Court decided that police officers do not have the right to use deadly force against a fleeing suspect if the suspect poses no immediate threat to others. Since then, law enforcement has explored less-lethal weapons as an option to de-escalate a violent situation or capture a fleeing suspect. Every less-lethal weapon has its downside, which must be considered before an agency purchases these weapons. A survey of police officers across the country revealed common desires in less-lethal weapons; police officers want less-lethal weapons that are effective, easy to use, lightweight, and affordable. Recently the market has been flooded with new less-lethal products, including improved pepper spray and pepperballs, "stingerballs," and glue guns. Agencies must exercise care in the less-lethal products they chose because although they are designed to deliver a less-than-lethal level of force, the products can injure and even kill individuals if used incorrectly. Training is thus important, yet costly; as the price of less-lethal weapons decrease, training will become more feasible for every police agency.
Main Term(s): Less lethal technologies
Index Term(s): Police weapons
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