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Electronic Immobilization Devices

NCJ Number
Law Enforcement Technology Volume: 28 Issue: 10 Dated: October 2001 Pages: 70-75
Tony Jones
Date Published
October 2001
6 pages
This article describes how electronic immobilization devices work and their proper application.
An Electronic Immobilization Device (EID) is a personal weapon designed to be an extension of the user's hand and arm. An EID provides the short-term incapacitation of a resisting or hostile individual by means of a safe, non-injurious force. The device uses electronic pulse wave technology to temporarily override the human body's electrical system, thereby causing confusion and disorientation, and disabling muscular response. The EID is a useful weapon because it: (1) can be used by all officers regardless of size or strength; (2) requires only minimal training time; (3) requires no special skills; (4) can be used at almost all levels of force; (5) reduces the chances of applying excessive force; (6) enhances an officer's ability to respond to threats safely; and (7) offers a drastic reduction of incurred liability resulting from the use-of-force as applicable to the criminal justice system. The article concludes that, when used properly, at the correct moment, and when alternatives have been exhausted, the EID provides a viable and safe means to control a hostile confrontation on the low side of the use-of-force spectrum, preventing the unnecessary use of more force and the consequences that brings.