New LAPD Flashlights Feared Less Effective in Beatings

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On Friday, LAPD Chief William Bratton unveiled new police flashlights powered by LEDs rather than standard bulbs.  The new flashlights are brighter, use less power, need fewer batteries, and so can be made smaller than the two-pound, two-foot model that was previously standard-issue.  While some praised the new high-tech, ten-inch model 7060 LED flashlight, others may be lamenting the loss of the good old Mark One Combined Photon Emission Unit/Kinetic Individual-Suspect-Control Device.

That is, the new flashlights will be harder to beat people with.

That’s exactly why the old ones were banned.  According to the report, the idea for the LED coplight "was conceived just days after" the media captured and broadcast images of police using the Mark One to beat a car-theft suspect.  The smaller, brighter flashlight thus fits perfectly with the department’s plans to deploy smaller, brighter policemen.

As you might expect, the ACLU chimed in on this story, and its executive director for southern California emitted one of the better quotes so far this year.  "It’s a really important step in the right direction," she said, "and it’s going to make a difference in how the police department deals with the community.  We’ve always felt that a flashlight was not an instrument to beat people with.  This new one will serve the purpose it was intended to."  Not an instrument to beat people with?  Lady, if God didn’t mean for us to beat people with portable electrical devices he wouldn’t have made batteries so big and heavy.  Anyway, flashlights don’t beat people — people beat people.  Smaller flashlights just means more strokes per criminal.

Or, not necessarily, if the Model 7060 can be deployed in the right way.  The report noted that it also features a "tactical mode," in which it becomes "bright enough to temporarily blind suspects."  Its specially designed photons undoubtedly will leave innocent eyeballs intact.

Link: AP via Yahoo! News