California Police Demo New Pepper Ball Launcher

NATIONAL CITY, Calif. --

A new pepper ball system used by the National City Police Department is said by its makers to have twice the impact of a standard pepper ball launcher.

Watch Video

Police said the pepper balls are a safer -- and more effective -- implement than most to fighting crime.

"The subject knows he's been hit, there's a certain amount of pain [and] compliance," National City police officer Bill Phillips said.

Phillips said the keys to the system are large clouds of pepper powder, which cause a burning and stinging effect upon those it is used on.

'[It] changes their way of thinking and usually they give in," Phillips said.

National City was the first police agency in the country to test the new system in December. Police said they already have used it, bringing down an accused car thief during a chase.

Copyright 2008 by NBCSandiego.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Loading