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Grand Chute Police deploy new arrest device

Published: Apr. 7, 2021 at 5:03 PM CDT
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GRAND CHUTE, Wis. (WBAY) - The Grand Chute Police Department has a new tool in its squads that will help to take combative suspects into custody. Wednesday night is the first night the Bola Wrap will be available for officers to use.

Grand Chute police spent Wednesday training its officers on the newest tool in its arsenal. The Bola Wrap looks like something you’d find Batman carrying but works like a lasso from the old Wild West, only more modern.

“It’s a handheld device that when deployed discharges two anchors attached to a Kevlar strap, and when that Kevlar strap is deployed it acts like a bola where it wraps around the individual temporarily, restrains them and entangles them,” says Officer Travis Waas.

A non-lethal device, the Bola Wrap, which members of the department practiced using on one another in their training, is not “pain compliant.” It is, however, still intimidating and somewhat unexpected. When deployed, it sounds like a gun and wraps you up instantly.

Even the chief said he was a little nervous being on the receiving end of it. According to Chief Greg Peterson, “There really was no sensation or pain. You can kind of feel the rush when the cord hits you, but it’s not painful. And it wraps you up before you know it. I think if you were to try to move, of course, that’s the goal to keep people from trying to move, that it could trip somebody or you could embed the little hooks at the end of the cord, but there was no sensation or no pain.”

The only department north of Madison to have the Bola Wrap in use, Grand Chute police believe there is a time and a place to use this device instead of a Taser or pepper spray.

The hope is by wrapping up a suspect with the Bola Wrap, injuries to everyone involved in a difficult arrest will be reduced.

Officer Waas adds, “Rather than necessarily going hands on with the individual, which could lead to officers getting injured or the suspect getting injured, we can now deploy the Bola Wrap entangle them, detain them momentarily so that officers can step in, handcuff them, before it escalates into something further.”

While the department has five of these devices on hand now, it will evaluate their use to determine if it needs to purchase more.

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