The use of force by law enforcement has remained a highly discussed topic around the nation. Many times, the conversation is informed by people posting videos or images to social media of a single moment in time in which an officer strikes a person with a baton, or uses a stun gun against a person. These videos and photos often do not portray the entire context of the incident that led to the officer using force. In many cases, the force is justified, but this does not always remove the lasting impression of a police department created by the video clip or photo.

Law enforcement agencies have in recent years explored new technology that can equip officers to deescalate situations and reduce use-of-force encounters and restrain arrestees with fewer serious injuries.

The BolaWrap Remote Restraint, developed by WRAP Technologies, is one tool officers can use as an alternative to a less-lethal weapon. This is a hand-held device worn on the officer’s duty belt. When discharged, the system deploys a Kevlar cord and wraps the person’s arms and/or legs, rendering the person immobile. This is an effective way for officers to safely detain an uncooperative person or someone experiencing a mental health crisis. Not only does this method deescalate the situation, but the system can further reduce the chance of injury, or of an officer having to use a higher level of force.

The BolaWrap Remote Restraint. (High-res image)

Several South Carolina police departments are now using the BolaWrap system. Learn more about BolaWrap online. The website features body camera footage from departments across the U.S. demonstrating the BolaWrap in operation.

The purchase of a Bola Wrap is covered under the SC Municipal Insurance and Risk Financing Fund Law Enforcement Liability Reduction Grant, for those who are members of SCMIRF.