The Chaska (MN) Police Department is the first in the state to test the new "BolaWrap" restraint device, which fires a length of Kevlar cord at a rate of 640 feet per second which then wraps around a resistive subject, immobilizing them so responding officers can safely approach and make an arrest.
Chaska Police Chief Scott Knight told the Star Tribune, "The moment I saw this device, I knew that we needed to have it. This is one of the biggest advancements I've seen in my 43-year career. I wish I'd had this tool when I was an officer."
The handheld unit uses a blank 9mm charge to propel a thin cord, tipped with two barbed ends resembling fish hooks, around a person's arms or legs—immobilizing individuals up to 25 feet away.
The device was reportedly designed by former police officers with the intent to provide law enforcement another tool to deal with subjects who are either mentally ill, intoxicated, or high on an illegal controlled substance.
About a half-dozen law enforcement agencies around the country are currently using it, and another 40 are testing it.