SPRINGFIELD, Ore. – On Wednesday, July 4, Springfield Police were led on a chase around the Gateway area by a man named Jordan Loew. They were only able to put him under arrest after he was shot with four rounds of bean bag shots.
Officers said these bean bag shots are fired from what they call “long-range impact weapons.” They’re designed to impair someone for long enough that officers can control them. Police say they feel like a punch, but harder.
Officer Tom Speldrich said these guns don’t go out with them on every call. It’s a matter of getting information back to the station that lets them know they should bring some out. In order to safely use these, Speldrich said they need to be in an uncrowded situation where there are little to no bystanders.
"We want to make sure that we're using it in an area where nobody innocent is going to get hurt, and hopefully minimize the risk of property damage,” said Speldrich.
It also needs to be a situation where they need more than about 25 feet of shooting range, otherwise they would be able to use tasers
There’s specialized training that goes into using these weapons, and Officer Speldrich said the most important thing is being careful about loading the munition.
"We make sure that when we go to deploy one that we are putting eyes on every single one of these bean bag rounds that we put into it to make sure that we're not accidentally loading the wrong type of munitions,” Speldrich said.
The full story of the chase is linked below.