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Use of pepper spray in policing: retrospective study of situational characteristics and implications for violent situations
Competence Ctr South & East;Lund University.
Competence Ctr South & East.
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Institute of Police Education. Competence Ctr South & East.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-4798-0830
Lund University.
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2017 (English)In: Police Practice & Research, ISSN 1561-4263, E-ISSN 1477-271X, Vol. 18, no 4, p. 391-406Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Pepper spray (OC) is a policing tool aimed to prevent or stop aggressive behavior by quickly and temporarily incapacitate without injuring. To date, few studies have investigated OC's operational usefulness and limitations. OC reduced violent behavior in 93% of the 936 incidents investigated. However, the operative range was often <2m and it took between 3 and 5 s of spraying before obtaining effect, partly owing to the difficulties of hitting a small, sometimes erratically moving target. Collateral hits were noted in 24% of the incidents, whereof 90% were other officers. Noteworthy, in 21% of incidents officers put themselves at large personal risk by using OC at close range against people armed with lethal weapons. Hence, OC emerges as a suitable tool for handling low threat situations but lacks key traits to ensure safe and efficient policing of high threat situations, e.g., handling armed assailants.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2017. Vol. 18, no 4, p. 391-406
Keywords [en]
Oleoresin capsicum, pepper spray, policing, efficiency ratio, psychomotor effects
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Research subject
Social Sciences, Police Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-72134DOI: 10.1080/15614263.2017.1288119ISI: 000399922100006Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85011632849OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-72134DiVA, id: diva2:1194964
Available from: 2018-04-04 Created: 2018-04-04 Last updated: 2019-08-29Bibliographically approved

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Fredriksson, Peter J.

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • harvard1
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  • vancouver
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  • de-DE
  • en-GB
  • en-US
  • fi-FI
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  • nn-NB
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  • Other locale
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Output format
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