SHAWNEE, Okla. — A reporter at KFOR-TV in Oklahoma City asked police to aim a new weapon they’re carrying, right at his face
Sheriff’s deputies there have a new weapon for the arsenal. It’s the JPX Pepper Gun. Unlike mace or pepper spray, there is very little cross contamination.
“It’s been tested in 40 mph winds. It continues to shoot straight. [With] Pepper spray, the wind will blows and it affects everyone,” explained Sheriff Mike Booth.
Deputies have never actually used this gun, until they shot it at KFOR Reporter Lance West. With eye protection, REACT medics standing nearby and Pott County’s top gun behind the trigger, West became their very first test subject.
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.
“That will shut down anybody. That’s worse than being tased, maced, it might be worse than being shot!,” West exclaimed.
“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,” Booth told television station KFOR.
There are critics who question the effectiveness and safety of pepper spray.
“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,” said ACLU Legal Director, Brady Henderson.
“No officer wakes up and wants to take a life. That’s the last thing anyone wants to do,” said Pottawatomie County Undersheriff, J.T. Palmer.
by Lance West and Ted Malave, KFOR, Oklahoma City
*Warning: Video may be difficult for some viewers to watch.*