Wilbarger County Sheriff's Office now using pepper guns

WILBARGER COUNTY (KAUZ) - The Wilbarger County Sheriff's Office has a new tool that will give deputies an upper hand when suspects put up a struggle.

It is a Centurion LE Pepper Gun and the office is the first in North Texas to have them. The pepper gun sends a blast of red pepper stronger than the average pepper spray.

The Sheriff deputies said it is known for taking any one down.

"It causes immediate eye closure and from there it will begin to feel like you stuck your face in a hornet's nest," Darron Teeters, Vice President of Sales and Training for JPX America, Inc said.

Wilbarger County Sheriff Bill Price said it will help his deputies detain a suspect without using physical force or a taser.

"There are instances where I have actually seen where the taser hasn't functioned correctly and that's just because it was in a jail setting," Sheriff Price said.

To get a feel what they will be using the sheriff and his deputies shot the gun, tasted the extract that looks like red paint, applied it like chapstick and put it in their nostrils to see how strong it was first hand.

"I strongly feel with this right here that you could easily handle a situation if you encountered it without backup, until your back up arrives, with this product," Deputy Tim Hall said with tears caused by the pepper gun.

He said that is important because with almost 10,000 square miles to cover it can take up 20 minutes for backup to arrive.

The Wilbarger County Sheriff's Office bought five of the pepper guns for an estimated $5,600. That is half the price for the same amount of tasers.

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