Canandaigua Police Department is looking to introduce PepperBall launchers, a non-lethal weapon similar to paintball guns, as part of its efforts to address tense situations more efficiently and safely.
Assuming City Council gives it the final green light.
Police Chief Mathew Nielson believes this tool provides officers a distance advantage, allowing for safer engagement. The PepperBall projectiles are filled with OC spray and can incapacitate suspects from a distance, reducing the need for lethal force.
The move comes after the department evaluated two officer-involved shootings earlier this year. In both incidents, suspects were armed, with one episode resulting in a fatality after a high-speed chase and another where a taser failed to subdue a suspect.
The equipment would be financed using funds from the department’s Drug Asset and Forfeiture Account. A final decision will be made by the Canandaigua City Council in their November 2 meeting.
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