FAIRFAX COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE

STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

I.

SOP NUMBER: 525
SUBJECT: USE OF ECD (Electronic Control Devices)

PURPOSE
To establish policy regarding the M26 and X26, electronic control devices (ECDs) and the
Remote Electronic Activated Control Technology (REACT) BANDIT. This SOP will cover
authorization and conditions for use, deployment of the ECD, after action requirements, certified
training and maintenance of the equipment.

II.

POLICY
It is the policy of the Fairfax County Sheriff’s Office to minimize the threat of injury or death to the
public, criminal suspects, department personnel and maintain institutional integrity by utilizing
non-lethal control devises when practical. It is recognized that ECDs are not a substitute for
lethal force and a deputy should not succumb to additional risk because of its availability. An
ECD is recommended when appropriate to use, and that it might reduce the risk of injury or death
to those involved.

III.

INFORMATION
The ECD is a defensive weapon that transmits electrical impulse causing NMI (Neuro-Muscular
Incapacitation) to the central nervous system. These impulses cause uncontrollable contractions
of the muscle tissue affecting the sensory and motor nervous system which incapacitates the
individual.

IV.

DEFINITIONS
1.

ECD: An ECD includes, but is not limited to, the M-26 or X-26, and any Department
authorized and issued less-lethal device which is designed to produce and emit an
electrical charge.

2.

Deployment: The activation of an ECD resulting in the arcing of the unit, a contact
maneuver on a subject or animal, and/or the discharge of an air cartridge whether or not
the probes strike their intended target. The mere display of an ECD is not a deployment.

3.

Stunned: The accepted word indicating that a person or animal has received an
electrical charge from an ECD.

4.

ECD Control Manager: An ECD instructor who has been appointed by the Sheriff, or
designee, to manage the ECD Program.

5.

NMI: Neuro-Muscular Incapacitation

6.

DPM: Digital Power Magazine

7.

Conventional Tactics: Those tactics and other uses of force described in the
Department’s Use of Force Model.

8.

Medical Personnel: Includes, but is not limited to, Doctors, Physician’s Assistants,
Nurses, Paramedics, Emergency Medical Technicians, and SERT medic.

9.

Soft Tissue Areas: genitalia, eyes, face, head, breast (for females) and throat.

10.

Institutional Integrity: The condition whereby order is maintained in a detention facility to
prevent violations of law, threatened assault to others, attempted / threatened suicide,
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FAIRFAX COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

SOP NUMBER: 525
SUBJECT: USE OF ECD (Electronic Control Devices)

and failure of prisoners to respond to lawful commands to ensure safety and security of
the facility.
11.
V.

REACT Bandit: Remote Electronic Activated Control Technology (REACT) Bandit.

PROCEDURE
A.

B.

C.

Authorized Users
1.

ECDs shall only be issued to and used by deputies who have completed the user
or instructor training course, and are currently certified.

2.

Trained personnel who are authorized to carry a firearm during the shift that they
are working that day or duty assignment may carry the ECD while in Class A
uniform.

3.

Trained personnel authorized to utilize the ECD will undergo refresher training
every two years.

4.

The ADC Shift Commander or designee / AIB Supervisor may authorize trained
personnel to utilize ECDs while on duty in the ADC / AIB.

5.

Trained Sheriffs Emergency Response Team members on assignment.

Carrying of the ECD
1.

Only authorized holsters will be used to carry the ECDs. The only exception is a
deputy who is acting in an undercover capacity.

2.

The holster will be positioned on the support side and will not be positioned next
to any firearm.

Authorized usage
The ECD may be used to control a violent or potentially violent subject when a Deputy
reasonably believes that the following conditions exist:

D.

1.

Deadly force does not appear to be immediately necessary.

2.

Attempts to gain compliance of the subject by verbal commands or physical
control have been, or will likely be, ineffective in the situation; or there is
reasonable expectation that it will be unsafe for deputies to approach within
contact range of the subject.

Deployment
1.

Only properly functioning and charged ECDs shall be carried.

2.

Each discharge of an ECD shall be investigated and documented. An “ECD Use
Report”, shall be completed after each use of the ECD. Discharges of ECDs
during an approved training session will not require routine completion of these
forms or further investigation unless an injury occurs during the training.

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FAIRFAX COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

E.

SOP NUMBER: 525
SUBJECT: USE OF ECD (Electronic Control Devices)

3.

The M26 and X26 ECDs are programmed to deliver a 5 second electrical current.
The deputy operating the weapon can shorten the automatic 5 second cycle by
turning the weapon off. It is recommended that during field deployment and use
of the weapon, the full 5 second cycle is delivered to gain maximum
effectiveness and compliance of the subject.

4.

NEVER aim an ECD at the eyes or face. It is laser sighted. With the use of most
cartridges the top probe will follow the front and rear sights as well as the laser
sight. The bottom probe will travel at an 8 degree downward angle below the aim
point/ laser sighted area. The bottom probe will drop approximately 1 foot for
every 7 feet it travels from weapon to target.

5.

Have additional cartridges available or a second ECD ready to deploy in the
event that the probes fail to contact the subject.

6.

Whenever possible, the use of the ECD will be preceded by a verbal warning that
force will be used if compliance is not obtained.

7.

The deployment of an ECD will be reasonable, based on training and the totality
of the circumstances known to the deputy.

8.

The deputy must consider the potential injury to subjects who are running,
traveling at high speeds (bikes, mopeds, skateboards, etc.), or situated in
elevated places (roofs, ladders trees, walls, utility poles, etc.). Age and known
physical handicaps should also be taken into consideration.

9.

DO NOT fire an ECD near flammable liquids or fumes. The ECD can ignite
gasoline and other flammables. Some self-defense sprays are flammable and
should be investigated before being used in conjunction with the ECD.

10.

There are times when after the initial impact of the probes that a follow up charge
will have to be deployed in order to gain compliance and safely control the
subject. Do not attempt to remove the probes until the subject is in full restraints.

Removal of Probes
1.

Protective latex gloves will be worn by anyone removing probes

2.

Probes will only be removed by medical personnel or staff trained in their
removal.

3.

Once the probes are removed the area should be decontaminated with a
disinfectant wipe and a band aid applied, if available.

4.

If probes penetrate soft tissue areas as defined above, medical staff will
determine if subject will be transported to the emergency room for removal.

5.

All probes will be treated as biohazard material and will be disposed of as such.

6.

If the ECD is used in a “drive stun” capacity no action is needed.

7.

Medical attention will be given to any subject who has been stunned as soon as
possible and when safe to do so.
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FAIRFAX COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

F.

G.

Reporting Procedures
1.

Any time an ECD is deployed a Use of Force report must be completed and
investigated in accordance with SOP 032

2.

An ECD use sheet must be completed, documenting the serial number on the air
cartridge, where the probes made contact, who witnessed the usage, who
removed the probes and duration of use.

3.

The expended air cartridge as well as one AFID tag must be collected (if
available), packaged and turned in with the report to Internal Affairs (or ECD
control manager)

4.

After deployment the Internal Affairs Section (or ECD control manager) will
download usage information through the internal data port and maintain a hard
copy for record.

5.

If practical, pictures should be taken of the signature marks (if any) and
submitted with the reports

Readiness and Safety of the ECD
1.

Each deputy will perform a spark test upon receipt of the unit and at least once a
week to ensure the ECD is charged and properly functioning. These spark tests
will be performed with the air cartridge removed and away from bystanders.

2.

If a digital power magazine (DPM) on the X26 reaches 20% or lower, it shall be
replaced. The used DPM will be turned over to the ECD coordinator for training
purposes.
a.
b.

3.

H.

SOP NUMBER: 525
SUBJECT: USE OF ECD (Electronic Control Devices)

Proper batteries for the M26 are 8 Duracell Ultra Alkaline AA.
Proper Batteries for the X26 are 2 Lithium Batteries.

Replace the cartridges by the expiration date. All expired cartridges will be
turned in and replaced with new cartridges. Expired cartridges will be utilized in
training only.

Remote Electronic Activated Control Technology (REACT) BANDIT
1.

The device is a remotely operated electronic restraint device which produces an
electrical shock for eight continuous seconds. It can disorient, temporarily
immobilize and stun a person without causing permanent injuries. A small radio
transmitter with a range of 150 to 175 feet activates it. The device may be used
in combination with other restraints such as handcuffs and leg restraints.

2.

Only deputies who have successfully completed the prescribed training program
provided by a certified instructor may operate the BANDIT.

3.

Trained personnel authorized in the use of the REACT BANDIT will undergo
refresher training every two years.

4.

One deputy will be designated as the Control Officer during application of the
BANDIT. The Control Officer’s sole responsibility is to monitor the inmate
wearing the BANDIT. The Control Officer is the only deputy authorized to
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FAIRFAX COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

SOP NUMBER: 525
SUBJECT: USE OF ECD (Electronic Control Devices)

activate the BANDIT. The Control Officer must never relinquish control of the
transmitter without supervisory approval and never relinquish the transmitter to a
deputy who is not trained in its use.
5.

6.

Appropriate circumstances for the application of the BANDIT include:
a.

An inmate who has a documented history of assaultive behavior.

b.

An inmate who has a documented history of escape or attempted
escape.

c.

An inmate acting as his own attorney (pro se) who has a documented
behavior problem.

d.

An inmate who is a documented management problem.

Prior to the application of the BANDIT on any prisoner:
a.

The presiding judge, Commonwealth Attorney and Defense Attorney will
be notified.

b.

The Commander of the Division in which the device is being employed
will be notified through the chain of command.

c.

ADC Medical Staff will be notified to ensure that the individual is not:
1)
2)
3)
4)

7.

pregnant
known to have heart disease
known to have Multiple Sclerosis
known to have Muscular Dystrophy

The system may be activated under, but not limited to these circumstances:
a.

Any attempt to escape or assault someone.

b.

Any outburst or movement which appears to threaten escape or assault.

c.

Any tampering with the system.

d.

Any time the wearer moves out of sight of the Control Officer.

8.

The audible warning tone should be used where and when possible. Acts of
aggression or escape will warrant immediate and swift response.

9.

The following actions are required if the BANDIT is activated while applied to any
inmate:
a.

The Control Officer will notify his/her supervisor as soon as practical.

b.

The inmate will be examined by Medical personnel as soon as practical.

c.

A photograph of the signature marks will be taken as soon after the
incident as possible. Photographs should be taken with and without a
measuring tape or scale being included in the photographs to establish
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FAIRFAX COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE
STANDARD OPERATING PROCEDURE

SOP NUMBER: 525
SUBJECT: USE OF ECD (Electronic Control Devices)

the size and location of the marks.
10.

The Control Officer will submit a written report before he/she goes off duty. The
report should include:
a.

The observed reaction of the prisoner at the time of the activation.

b.

A description of any observable marks or injuries to the prisoner.

c.

Any complaints of injury from the prisoner.

d.

The time, location and by whom the photographs were taken.

STACEY A. KINCAID
SHERIFF
10/24/06
DATE APPROVED
12/05/06
EFFECTIVE DATE
Revised February 2008, March 2014

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