Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Tasers and The CMPD

The Charlotte Observer points out the obvious in this morning's editorial with the headline "Here's key in Taser use: Police using good rules".

The basics of the Observer's view is Tasers don't kill people cops do.

"We don't argue with the idea that Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officers should be armed with the safest weapons available. So in that sense, the Charlotte City Council's decision to buy new Tasers that prevent officers from firing high voltages of electricity for more than five seconds at a pop makes sense.

But this move does not end concerns over the use of Tasers, associated with the deaths of two suspects in Charlotte in the past three years. These are not truly the "non-lethal" weapons that they are so frequently advertised to be."

Cedar's Take: CMPD has guidlines as to when "non-leathal" force is permitted. Sadly those rules are not really hard and fast when it comes to Tasers.

As an example have a look at CMPD's "Use of Force Continuum" color chart here. The idea is that somewhere between Defensive Resistance and Active Aggression the suspect is subject to being Tased.

The written part of the directives which are here, are even less clear "An officer may use non-deadly force upon another person when and to the extent that the officer believes it reasonably necessary".
Looking though 100s of Taser events many suspects were only offering verbal resistance when they got zapped. In other words, in the officers mind mouthing off could make it "reasonably necessary" to Tase a suspect.

The protocol to execute a person in the electric chair requires a 15 second application of 2,450 volts. CMPD Officer Dawson gave 17-year-old Darryl Turner, 37 seconds at 50,000 volts.

Officer Dawson thought is was "reasonably necessary" to give Darryl Turner a continuous shock for 37 seconds. But CMPS determined that he violated CMPD directives and was given a 5 day active suspension.

In this video the mouthly woman gets Tased for a whole lot more than 5 seconds. She sure does a lot of yammering.

WSOC TV NEWS: "Police have not said when officers will get the new Tasers. Even when they do, they may not use them right away because officers may need new training."


Anonymous said...

from the Observer: "Another safety feature of the new Taser is that an officer can trigger a visible and audible warning with the Taser, according to Monroe.

"That pre-warning stops so many people," Monroe said.

Sorry, but isn't an officer yelling, STOP! and I WILL TASE YOU a visible and audible pre-warning? We already paid for that. What a moronic arguement.

Anonymous said...

oops. argument. moronic typo

Anonymous said...

It might have been nice if the turds at the observer had bothered to use a current copy of the directives (must have been too hard to find - Blister the dept all you want but at least try some semblance of fairness. Very easy to link up an article for a blog, but I guess it must really be too much to ask that you fact check it.

Anonymous said...

re; anon 6:58; apologies to the observer, actually it was 'cedar' that was incapable of finding current copies of the directive (hint - . everything else previously said still stands.

Cedar Posts said...

Yo 6:58 - 9:47

Come on now Brother if this post isn't linked to the current copy of the directives please provide.

If the CMPD directives spell out in greater detail how, where and when tasering someone is acceptable please show the way.

Thanks in advance.

At the same time...

After watching nearly a hundred taser videos what I see is some cops have gotten soft and lazy. Why break a sweat when you can just zap someone?

Now I for one would be in a lot of trouble with a Taser, as I'd zap these mofo's at the first wrong answer.

But whatever happened to some quick down to the ground you go, cuffed and on the hood police work?

Just saying.

Anonymous said...

@2:23 The reason officers have gotten away from the on the ground down you go mentality is because we have learned that when you get hurt it cost you a helluva lot more than its worth.Time off work, use of sick time, trips back and forth for treatments, missing off duty jobs....
It is not worth it especially when the perp is gonna walk anyway

Anonymous said...

The reason Tasers are used is when there is a reasonable likelihood a physical confrontation is about to ensue. Is it better to get into a fight with someone or to tase them? If a guy is standing there and says "I'm going to punch you" and gets into a fighting stance, wouldn't that imply to a reasonable person he intends to assault you? Therefore, the use of the Taser is appropriate.

Also, to compare the electric chair against the Taser is incorrect. You imply that because the electric chair only uses 2,450 volts, the Taser is much worse because it uses 50,000 volts. As anyone who has dealt with electricity will tell you, it's the amps that kill you, not the volts.

John Green said...

Great information, Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

Don't get hurt at work if you are an employee of the City of Charlotte, no matter what job you have, Period

Anonymous said...

the highway partrolmam or whatever he was should have just cleaned her clock...just because its a woman doesnt mean crap...if they think they are bad then let them feel what bad is...if they get up after that then i would be tazer ready. because the fight is on.

Anonymous said...

If John and Andy had tasers instead of trying to wrestle down that pos they would still be here.