Monday, August 17, 2009

Lawyer for White Woman Taser Victim Says Incident Raises Question Whether Tasers Should Be Used at All in Law Enforcement

Some Black bloggers argue that there may be a legitimate role for Tasers in law enforcement, but that new rules should be implemented and followed. The white lawyer for a white female soccer mom disagrees in New York doubts that, saying in the above video of the incident and television reporting that his client's case raises the issue of whether Tasers have any appropriate role in law enforcement at all.

African American Political Pundit reports:

As reported by the Huffington Post, a mother who was zapped [shocked] with a stun gun in front of her children during a New York traffic stop has filed notice she'll sue the sheriff's department.

A police video captured by a dashboard camera shows Deputy Sean Andrews yanking Audra Harmon out of her minivan by the arm and knocking her down with two Taser shots in January.

Harmon was charged with disorderly conduct, resisting arrest and speeding. Her lawyer says prosecutors dismissed the charges after watching the videotape. Harmon claims Andrews was improperly trained. She says a Taser isn't supposed to be used against people who pose no threat. Moe HERE

What is most outrageous about this case is that even according to the arresting officer's account, the traffic stop began because the mother (with her fifteen year old son and six year-old daughter in the car) was talking on her cell phone. He pulled her over for talking on a cellphone. When the mother says she demonstrated that she didn't have a cellphone, the officer changed his testilying accusation to speeding.

Solely on that basis, the officer decided to arrest the woman, and then tacked on the charge of "resisting arrest" when the officer found he had to shock the victim twice to make her body utterly immobile.

If police officers were shoulder-fired rocket launchers, there is no doubt but that they would misuse them and overuse them with tragic results for whole neighborhoods. If police officers were given miniature nuclear bombs and hand grenades, there is no doubt but that some officers would sometimes use them in ways and in circumstances that would kill defendants and everyone else for miles around. Some weapons are just bound to be abused and electrocution devices are among those weapons.

There is no rule and no observance of any rule that could make hand grenades appropriate law enforcement devices for all police to carry. There is no circumstance under which a small nuclear explosion could be considered an appropriate response to one or even half a dozen defendants. And there is no way that mobile electric chairs can be used by police without being misused.

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