UNIVERSITY CIRCLE, Ohio (WJW) – Police officers in University Circle are now being trained on a new non-lethal device, that will help them restrain suspects who are resisting arrest or failing to comply with their orders.

The new enforcement tool is called the BolaWrap. The device is viewed as the very latest alternative to deadly force.

The BolaWrap fires a cord that is eight feet long, and wraps around the body of a suspect, with the optimal area being around the legs.

“It fits onto the duty belt of the police officer and also part of that mechanism is the cartridge, the cartridge is fitted into the BolaWrap and then when it is shot, it’s shot at about 17 feet,” said UCPD Captain David Leff.  

The idea is to prevent suspects from moving until officers can move in and restrain them. 

“It allows them to also keep themselves safe, as well as the individual safe and it allows us to make sure that we can help them, secure them and also take them and get them the proper help that they need,” said Captain Leff.

The training on the BolaWrap is part of an overall UCPD program to educate officers on strategies to de-escalate dangerous and volatile situations that they face on the job.

Officers are called upon on a regular basis to intervene in mental health crises, where individuals are a threat to themselves, and those who believe in the use of non-lethal force whenever possible, say a weapon like the BolaWrap will be a valuable tool in finding a resolution without bloodshed. 

“That’s our job, that’s one thing that we have to start doing better at and we are, and this department, we’ll be ready with the BolaWrap,” said Captain Leff.

We are told UCPD officers will be training on the device for the next 30 to 45 days and will then start using it on the streets.