Mille Lacs jail to add ‘pepper ball’ tool

Princeton Union-Eagle

There hasn’t been a riot inside the Mille Lacs County jail for decades, but the Mille Lacs County Sheriff’s Department is adding a pepper ball weapon to the department’s arsenal in case a jail riot should occur.

Sheriff Brent Lindgren received the Mille Lacs County Board’s approval on March 20 to purchase the pepper ball equipment and materials for two employeesat a cost of $1,495.

“It will bring you to your knees,” said Lindgren about the pepper ball spray, explaining that the its purpose would be to quell a riot or out-of control situation inside the Mille Lacs County Jail. By having the pepper spray, correctional officers could get control to move inmates to various locations within the jail, Lindgren told the board.

The expenditure would include training of two department employees who would then return and train other staff members. The vendor is Pepper Ball Technologies and the material will include two custom pepper ball launchers. 180 inert training rounds, 90 10X hot pepper rounds, one scuba tank and one air fill adapter, as well as miscellaneous other pieces of equipment.

Jail staff and/or any deputy going into the jail space to use the pepper ball spray would be wearing air mask equipment. Training will be on how to launch the equipment and maintenance.

For the full story, see the Thursday, March 29 print edition of the Times.