TAMPA, Fla. — The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office has a new less-lethal tool to de-escalate situations and restrain suspects. It’s called BolaWrap and it’s the size of a calculator.
To use it, there’s a button on top, and deputies push it to deploy a long kevlar string. There are hooks on both ends of the string, so when it wraps around the person’s body they will hook to clothes or skin. There’s a laser on the device so deputies can aim for their target, which are legs, arms, or torso.
“The BolaWrap is an extremely effective resource,” Sheriff Chad Chronister said. “I’m proud that our deputies have another, less lethal resource to avoid those physical confrontations and gain control of non-compliant, combative, and violent individuals without anyone getting hurt.”
The Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office began testing the BolaWrap in April 2021.
"By adding this new, less lethal resource to the menu of options for deputies, we can quickly and effectively deescalate a dangerous situation," said Sheriff Chad Chronister. "I am thankful we have the opportunity to implement the BolaWrap as a safe alternative that will complement our desire to bring a peaceful resolution to every encounter."
Deputies will still have a gun and taser.
The sheriff’s office used money from its current budget to purchase 165 BolaWraps for deputies.
“This resource is going to save… a lot of lives,” said Chronister.