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BANG! You’re not dead

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By Kaitlin Keane

Some Roane County Sheriff’s officers were doing more than just knocking on doors last week.
Some of them learned what is considered a safer new technique in high-risk situations for breaking down doors.
They used a device called the WallBanger, which merges a battering ram with explosives.

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The device allows for a faster, more successful forced entry, giving potentially hostile suspects less time to react and arm themselves.
The device can also be used as a bang-pole, setting off up to two loud  blasts to divert attention in a critical situation.
“This is a less lethal tool to de-escalate a stressful situation,” said Roane County Sheriff’s Lt. Rick Baker.
Baker said the department is looking into the feasabilty of getting the device. The WallBanger starts at around $1,450, but more elaborate models run close to $4,500.
The course, the first in Roane County, was taught by an instructor with SafariLand, the WallBanger manufacturer.
It’s not likely to be the last
“Because of our location and capabilities in the area we were able to be a host location,” Baker said. “Sheriff (Jack) Stockton wants our agency to be a training hub.”
Fifteen people attended the workshop, attending from as far away as North Carolina, Georgia and Virginia.