DULUTH, Minn. -

The Duluth Police are crediting a new less–lethal sponge gun from keeping a stand–off situation from turning fatal.

A 33 –year–old man held a machete while recently experiencing a mental health crisis.

Duluth Police Chief, Mike Tusken tells us this new sponge–shooting tool allowed officers to safely apprehend the suspect while keeping a distance and not having to shoot a bullet.

Tusken said, "To know we had that tool to deploy and to successfully resolve the situation, short of deadly force, was an absolute win for us and for the community."

The Duluth Police Department spent $8,000 this past Spring for six less-lethal launchers, ammunition and training. These were bought to bridge the gap between tasers and firearms.