Time to Ban Police Use of Tasers?

Amnesty International says,

Since June 2001, there have been more than 270 TASER-related deaths in the United States. AI is concerned that TASERs are being used as tools of routine force—rather than as weapons of last resort. Rigorous, independent, impartial study of their use and effects is urgently needed.

By all means let's get the data. It's possible that the people killed by tasers might have been shot to death by police limited to their traditional guns and truncheons. But I doubt it.

Not to mention the non-lethal abuses — like the 82-year-old Chicago woman tased when she refused to admit cops sent to check on her well-being.

Update: And how did I miss this? “The use of these weapons causes acute pain, constituting a form of torture,'' the UN's Committee against Torture said.

Update2: Digby has a video of a Utah Highway Patrolman tasing a motorist — and then apparently lying to his partner about having given the motorist a warning. Lawsuit to follow. (But, say Digby's commentators, the real issues are pushy Taser salespeople and poor law enforcement training.)

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3 Responses to Time to Ban Police Use of Tasers?

  1. Ann Bartow says:

    I wish I had some idea how often police officers use tasers instead of guns, versus tasers instead of oh, clubs or fists or whatever they would use if they didn’t have tasers.

  2. SEO says:

    Tazers seem to be the legitimate assault tool, however unlike fists and battons they don’t get their aggression out so in turn must Taze more people to get their fix.

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