Bola Wrap 100: New Device Helps Police Restrain Suspects

Bernie Tafoya
August 10, 2018 - 12:26 pm

CHICAGO (WBBM NEWSRADIO) -- In an era when police are under scrutiny for the way they bring suspects under control, police in the suburbs received Friday a demonstration on a new, less lethal kind of device. 

It's called the Bola Wrap 100 and Buffalo Grove Police Chief Steven Casstevens jokes that "I wish I had invented it."

Don De Lucca is the former police chief of Miami Beach and now represents the Bola Wrap company.  He describes the TV-remote sized as something, "that shoots out a Kevlar cord eight feet wide at 640-feet a second and wraps you up. It’s almost spiderman-like." He said the optimal range is between 10 and 25 feet.

De Lucca said it’s designed primarily to help police bring under control someone in a mental crisis. 

Former LA County Sheriff official Mike Rothans also works for Bola Wrap and said police in Madison, Wisconsin are using the Bola Wrap even for foot pursuits.

After Rothans demonstrated the device in the shooting range at the Buffalo Grove police station, Aurora Police Chief Kristin Zeman fired it.

She pointed the green laser at the waist of a mannequin 20 feet away and, in a split second, the Kevlar rope had wrapped up the "suspect."

Chief Zeman said "somewhere between Taser and this device, it’s impressive and it’s absolutely something I’d be considering."

Zeman said that, at first, she was expecting something more "slow motion," but she said it really "is a force".

WBBM Newsradio/Bernie Tafoya

When the device fires, a 9mm blank is what propels the rope from the cartidge. That produces a gunshot-like sound that Chief Zeman said would be a "very important stun" for a suspect.

Besides Buffalo Grove and Aurora, a number of representatives of other local police departments were on hand for the demonstration including Wauconda, Skokie, Highland Park, Riverwoods, Northlake and Gurnee.

One police representative asked about what happens if the rope accidently wraps around a suspect's neck, and Rothans said it would not kill a person. He indicated it would be hard to hit someone's neck even if you aimed for it.