Law enforcement agencies need more research and development (R&D) for non-lethal weapons. It seems to me that there hasn’t been a great deal of improvement in technology (except for DNA testing/profiling) for law enforcement equipment in recent years. More money should be invested in R&D to find better ways to subdue suspects without harming them, or “less lethal” methods.
Sonic Weapons. The use of sonic weapons shows promise. These weapons could be made in the form of handguns, grenades or cannons using a beam of focused sound or ultrasound. A handheld device with a selector switch for various intensities would be great. Extremely high-power sound waves attack the eardrums to cause severe pain or disorientation. Less powerful sound waves can cause nausea or discomfort. It may be possible for such a device to cause vibration of the eyeballs to distort vision. I can hear an officer shouting, “Set your weapons on stun.”
Paint Balls. I envision another weapon like a paint ball gun. It could fire a variety of balls:
- Paint. Okay, this is a regular paint ball. It could help to identify the perps when they’re rounded up later. It needs to be a type of paint that is more or less permanent.
- CS or Tear Gas. This bullet would contain enough CS or tear gas to incapacitate only one person.
- Dye. This bullet would contain a dye that can’t be removed from the skin, also an aid in identifying the perps.
- Smoke. This bullet contains a chemical that causes clothing to smoke – not burn. The trail of smoke could be followed. No need to shoot an escaping perp.
- Skunk Oil. This bullet contains thiol, an organic sulphur compound that is very pungent, causing a burning or stinging sensation. Of course, when used, the officers may decide not to press charges.
Drones. Then there’s the ever-popular drone. During traffic stops and other confrontations, a drone might be released to hover overhead or nearby. Another officer in a remote location (police station) would control the drone or it could have an auto-pilot that follows an officer. It could record the incident and if needed employ various less-lethal weapons such as aerial sprays of pepper, silly string, water, dye or skunk oil. Maybe the drone could deploy a net on the perp. The drone could even follow a fleeing perp.
Face Recognition. Police definitely need a device with software that can rapidly identify suspects using face recognition. The device would use three-dimensional face recognition technology coupled with thermal cameras and skin texture analysis.
Fingerprints. Other aids might include hand-held devices that rapidly search fingerprint data bases and DNA data bases. While these aren’t weapons, it would be useful if they could be used at distance of 10 – 25 feet.
Robots. Robots are used more and more by law enforcement. Mainly they’re used for bomb disposal but have been used in other situations to reduce the risk for officers. Why not create a robot that can apprehend a perp; even one without a lethal weapon? The robot could be programed to act on voice commands much like a dog. It could use all the less-lethal weapons: paint balls, sonic, silly string and/or nets. Ideally, it would approach a perp and latch on to him to restrain him until the officer can cuff him. “Good robot.”
I don’t know what the police need most, but they do need an alternative to killing a perp, even one that is armed or running.
I used several of these ideas in one of my novellas, The Night Predator, $2.99. Here’s a synopsis:
Vampires and homo sapiens have co-existed; sometimes living in peace and other times in violence. The on and off wars between vampires and homo sapiens has waged for centuries. Recent scientific discovers – DNA and archeology – prove that vampires are cousins of homo sapiens. When the vampire rebels drop their demand for a homeland for vampires somewhere in the Carpathian Mountains, the war officially ended with the signing of the London Peace Accords.
Most people hail the Accords and the peace it provides. However, extreme militants on both sides vowed to continue the battle. The two sides wage a terrorist campaign on each other, often killing innocent bystanders. In 2050, the FBI forms a task force as part of the anti-terrorist division to hunt down both extremists and prosecute them. Michael Castillo, a rookie FBI agent and a homo sapien, and Branko Renner, a former rebel vampire, are reluctant partners on the task force.
If you would like to order, the link is https://www.amazon.com/Night-Predator-Monte-R-Anderson-ebook/dp/B07CZQBTFS.