More Concern About Tasers
A 14-year-old boy went into cardiac arrest after police shot him with a Taser stun gun, raising new questions about the weapon. ... The boy was regaining consciousness Wednesday but was not yet talking.
Police say that the boy lunged at an officer, but the facts are in dispute.
Cook County Public Guardian Robert Harris said his office is considering civil action after its investigation found the boy was no longer violent and sitting on a couch when police arrived. "I'm consistently hearing this boy never moved off the couch," Harris said. "If he did, it was after he got hit with the Taser gun." County officials said they have no information to indicate the boy attacked anybody.
The controversy surrounding Tasers hasn't stopped law enforcement agencies from asking for more of the weapons. Elected officials in a number of communities -- including Pittsburgh and the Illinois cities of Naperville and Canton -- will need to decide whether the risks outweigh the benefits. Those decisions may benefit from research (funded by a grant from the Department of Justice) into the effect of a Taser shock on the heart.
While it would be prudent to await the results of further research before buying (or approving the use of) Tasers, the problem may solve itself, as the continuing controversy has caused the value of the weapon's manufacturer, Taser International, Inc., to fall precipitiously. Investors have responded to reports that 84 people have died after being shocked by a Taser, and to news that the Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating the company's dubious claim that the weapon is safe.
|< Sentencing Guideline and Mandatory Minimum Fixes | Stupid Criminal of the Week >|