SHAWNEE, Okla. — When violence erupts, gunfire is usually the last resort for law enforcers.
Pottawatomie County Undersheriff, JT Palmer said, “No officer wakes up and wants to take a life. That’s the last thing anyone wants to do.”
Now, Pott Co. deputies have a new weapon for the arsenal. It’s the JPX Pepper Gun.
Unlike mace or pepper spray, there is very little cross contamination.
Sheriff Mike Booth said, “It’s been tested in 40 mph winds. It continues to shoot straight. [With] Pepper spray, the wind will blows and it affects everyone.”
With the JPX, authorities say there are many applications. Like school shootings, workplace violence, courthouses where police want to eliminate collateral damage.
Booth told us, “In a courtroom scenario, a crowded room, in a place where you’re trying to take the bad guy and not everybody else, this is going to work, we believe, outstanding for that.”
There are critics who question the effectiveness and safety of pepper spray.
ACLU Legal Director, Brady Henderson said, “Things like pepper spray, they should really be called less lethal weapons. Not non-lethal weapons because the fact is, in the wrong situation, can cost somebody their life.”
Deputies have never actually used this gun, until now. With eye protection, REACT medics standing nearby and Pott County’s top gun behind the trigger, Lance West became their very first test subject.
Lance West was shot right between the eyes with a stream of gel around 1000-times more powerful than Jalapeno peppers.
For nearly an hour, he was knocked to his knees, blinded and completely blind and immobilized.
Lance said, “That will shut down anybody. That’s worse than being tased, maced, it might be worse than being shot!”
Watch the raw video of Lance being shot by this new JPX Pepper Gun:
Here is another angle of Lance as the first person to take a hit from this weapon: