'Airbag For A Bullet': Is It A Game-Changer For Police?

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The maker of a gun attachment called The Alternative has just wrapped up his company's first-ever police training for the device, with the police department in Ferguson, Missouri, which is considering buying it, six months after a police officer shot and killed unarmed 18-year-old Michael Brown.

Christian Ellis told Here & Now's Robin Young that The Alternative makes a bullet less lethal by slowing it down and trapping it. He says more than 400 agencies and police departments have expressed an interest in it.

Former New York City police officer and prosecutor Eugene O'Donnell says police have been searching for a reliably non-lethal weapon to prevent lethal encounters with suspects. But he isn't convinced that The Alternative gun attachment is the answer.

O'Donnell says policy leaders should be moving towards policing with non-lethal weapons and non-custodial arrests (meaning a notice is issued to the suspect to appear), so that the point of arrest isn't so fraught with danger and a sense of punishment.


This segment aired on February 6, 2015.


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