Friday, March 23, 2007

Tasering for convenience

One of the major concerns about the introduction of tasers has been the fear that they will lower the barrier for the police use of force from defending against violent offenders to "inducing compliance" to police commands. And now it seems to be happening; this morning's Herald has a story about a youth who was tasered by police after intervening in a fight. Their reason?

Senior Sergeant Garth Stockley, asked earlier by the Herald, said no officer had been assaulted.

He said the 17-year-old was Tasered because police couldn't bring him under control after the arrest.

"We were in the middle of the road and it was only a matter of time before somebody was going to get run over."

But looking at a cellphone video of the incident on the Three News site shows no traffic and no risk of anyone being run over. Instead, they seem to have done it simply for convenience - they wanted to shut up the person they were arresting, and get the job over and done with. And that is not simply a good enough reason for the police to use force.


Thoroughly agree. I distinctly remember signing up to a Campaign Against The Taser e-list about 6 months ago , but have heard nothing since. Anyone know what happened to them?


Posted by Anonymous : 3/24/2007 09:26:00 PM

Were they not already using force on him? Afterall he was being held against his will on the ground in the middle of the road then picked up and carried to a car (also obviously against his will).
There is no way that happens without considerable force being applied.

>shows no traffic and no risk of anyone being run over.

I note that if you were going to be run over, you wouldn't see it in the camera shot untill it was too late for anyone to do anything about it.

And the kid had apparently already been hit by one car (so there must have been some traffic), surely one would be screaming incompetence if the police let him get killed by another one.

Having said that this does look like an excessive use of the taser.


Posted by Anonymous : 3/25/2007 08:15:00 AM

someone already seems to have put some counter-spin to the police

Posted by Anonymous : 3/25/2007 09:55:00 AM

Interestingly this second story is exactly what I thought was the case (ie that those shouting were involved as was the guy). Hmm maybe I'm a better judge than I thought.


Posted by Anonymous : 3/25/2007 10:43:00 AM