Fifth Judicial District - Department of Correctional Services


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TITLE: Oc Spray


Staff members that are required to complete field work and who wish to carry Oleoresin Capsicum (O.C.) "pepper spray" may do so when trained by the District. Employees authorized to carry Oleoresin Capsicum (O.C.) "pepper spray" shall review the Oleoresin Capsicum (O.C.) "pepper spray" policies and procedures annually.


Staff members that are authorized and trained by the Fifth Judicial District Department of Correctional Services may carry O.C.

Staff members may carry only District authorized O.C. spray while conducting home visits and other field duties.

O.C. spray may be used for the defense of self and others.

  1. Effectiveness of Oleoresin Capsicum
    1. It rapidly and consistently controls a violent subject.
    2. It is an inflammatory agent. It does not depend on a subject's pain threshold for compliance.
    3. C It is a natural, biodegradable residue. Therefore, it has less recovery time without lasting effects. People do not build an immunity to it.
  2. Effects of Oleoresin Capsicum
    1. Eyes - tearing, rapid open and closing, or complete closing, extreme burning sensation lasting up to one hour.
    2. Respiratory system - inflammation of respiratory passages, restricting airway size.
    3. Effects on the skin - inflammation accompanied by an extreme burning sensation, discoloration and some swelling.
    4. Loss of motor control, disorientation, and confusion.
    5. Psychological effects - panic and helplessness.
  3. Use of Force
    1. Use of force continuum in accordance with the Fifth Judicial District Department of Correctional Services policy.
    2. Officer-suspect variables
    3. De-escalation
    4. Distance/Reactionary gap
    5. Danger cues
    6. Eye Contact
    7. Avoidance of Force
    8. Creating Distance-Distraction techniques
    9. Verbalization
  4. 4. Tactical use of Oleoresin Capsicum
  5. Where to carry, accessibility and safety.
  6. Spraying holds
    1. Strong hand with reactionary hand-up
    2. Aerosol cap/trigger up-nozzle facing oppositional subject
    3. Thumb is over safety cap or on trigger
    4. Can is held tightly in hand
  7. Target area would be eyes, nose, mouth:
    1. Horizontal Sweep
    2. Vertical Sweep
    3. Crisscross Sweep
    4. Serpentine Sweep
    5. Circle Sweep
  8. After using Oleoresin Capsicum
    1. Distance yourself from the person sprayed if possible.
    2. Call for assistance if this has not yet been done.
    3. If you are still near the sprayed person, verbally assure them they will be okay. Offer instructions to remedy the situation such as don't rub, stay calm, etc.
    4. Wait for assistance to arrive and allow the Fugitive Unit and/or local law enforcement to handle the situation.
    5. Water, air, and time are the remedies for someone who has been sprayed.
    6. Be aware of the potential complications from the spray.
  9. 6. Be aware of staff members who discharge or use Oleoresin Capsicum
    1. The supervising officer must write a detailed Incident Report (Web page) within 24 hours of the incident and forward it to their Supervisor.
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