A new crime-fighting tool is being tested at a west suburban police department – and it appears to be something straight out of a super hero comic book.
Aurora police said the tool – the Bolawrap 100 – is a game-changer and could even be life-saving.
“It’s something you might think Batman’s belt will have on it,” said Sgt. Larry Suttle with the Aurora Police Department.
Propelled by gun powder, the tool sends 7.5 feet of Kevlar up to 20 feet away at 640-feet per second. The Kevlar wraps around the subject and barbs hold it in place, making it nearly impossible to break the cords, authorities said.
“Distract, disorient…by the time they realize what hit them, it’s already wrapped around them and we’re moving in to gain control,” Suttle said.
The Aurora Police Department plans to test the new tool over the next year, hoping to catch suspects in a new way.
“We always try to use the least amount of force possible,” Suttle said. “It allows us to reach out and touch somebody without actually being in personal distance”
Officer Douglas Rashkow, one of two officers trained to use the Bolawrap 100, said it’s a welcomed new option for crisis intervention or dealing with a subject who may be abusing drugs.
“This is positioned to give us that first intervention option with the least likelihood of injury,” Rashkow said.
The one-year trial is free for the department. If it’s successful, each device costs several hundred dollars. The department said the benefits could outweigh the costs.
“We don’t like using force. We use it when we have to,” Suttle said. “If we can control the situation without using anymore force than this, then we’re happy.”