Brownsville Police Department trained its trainer officers and introduced the Bola-Wrap. This is a new device that will be a non-lethal way to help detain individuals going through a mental health crisis. Instructor Tim Szymanski, held a training session on how to use the Bola-Wrap last week.
The Bola-Wrap looks very similar to a taser but has a different function. Madison County Sheriff’s Department began using the technology last year.
“It is a remote restraint the officer can use in an attempt to lessen the amount of force or even any force used,” said Szymanski.
The Bola-Wrap, restricts your movement when fired. When the command, “wrap, wrap, wrap,” is given, an 8-foot Kevlar cord is released. Then it wraps around the person very fast restricting their movement. There are hooks on the rope that look like small fishing hooks that catches onto the clothing.
“The devices cost around $900,” said Assistant Chief Kelvin Evans. “If officers can detain an individual with little to nearly no force, then it is worth every penny.”
Despite the negative stigma police departments around the world may be getting, BPD is working hard to bridge the gap between safety and trust in its communities. One way the department is working on how they do things is determining if the situation can be a possible mental crisis.
Mental health has been an issue and is on the rise in Haywood County. About three weeks ago, BPD had officers to graduate from the Crisis Intervention Training with the Madison County Sheriff’s Office.
“We thought this would be a really good idea to add to our tools,” said Evans. “It’s a lot of incidents where we can use this thing without causing injury or death to anybody.”
Police departments have different tools ranging from pepper spray, pepper-ball, baton, taser, bean bag shotgun and firearms. The bolo-wrap will be the choice of selection to use after the verbal command from the officer if the circumstance permits it.
BPD officers are expected to start using the Bola-Wrap within the next week.
This article originally appeared on Jackson Sun: Brownsville Police Department, BPD, bolowrap, instructor, Tim Szymanski, Assistant Police Chief Kelvin Evans