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The use of TASERs and similar electroshock weapons as part of routine police work has become a source for controversy in the wake of critic's claims that the devices have caused several deaths.

Contents

Sources of controversy

Risks of death or serious injuries

Increased-risk targets

Critics argue that TASERs as well as other high-voltage stun devices can cause cardiac arrhythmia in susceptible subjects, possibly leading to heart attack or death in minutes by ventricular fibrillation, which leads to cardiac arrest and—if not treated immediately—to sudden death. People susceptible to this outcome are sometimes healthy and unaware of their susceptibility.[citation needed]

Although the medical conditions or use of illegal drugs among some of the casualties may have been the proximate cause of death, the electric blast of the TASER can significantly heighten such risk for subjects in an at-risk category.[1] This suggests that TASERs and other electroshock weapons would be dangerous to use on people with certain medical conditions and yet, since police officers will typically not know about a person's medical history or possible drug use, this entails a risk of death with virtually any suspect.

Risk of fire injury

Tasers come with express instructions not to use them where flammable liquids or fumes may be present, such as filling stations or by police raiding methamphetamine labs, as TASERs, like other electric devices, have been found to ignite flammable materials.

An evaluative study carried out by the British Home Office investigated the potential for TASERs to ignite CS gas. Seven trials were conducted, in which CS gas canisters containing methyl isobutyl ketone (a solvent used in all CS sprays utilized by the United Kingdom police) were sprayed over mannequins wearing street clothing. The TASERs were then fired at the mannequins. In two of the seven trials, "the flames produced were severe and engulfed the top half of the mannequin, including the head". This poses a particular problem for law enforcement, as some police departments approve the use of CS before the use of a TASER.[2]

Training use on soldiers

A February 2005 memorandum from the Aberdeen Proving Ground, a United States Army weapons test site, discouraged shocking soldiers with TASERs in training, contrary to TASER International's recommendations. The Army's occupational health sciences director affirmed the TASER's effectiveness, but warned that "Seizures and ventricular fibrillation can be induced by the electric current." and that "the practice of using these weapons on U.S. Army military and civilian forces in training is not recommended, given the potential risks."[3]

Training use on police

On 5 July 2005 Michael Todd, then Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, England, let himself be shot in the back with a TASER, to demonstrate his confidence that TASERs can be used safely. This was captured on video, and the video was released to the BBC on 17 May 2007. He was wearing a shirt and no jacket. When tased, he fell forward onto his chest on the ground, and (he said afterwards) "I couldn't move, it hurt like hell," he said after recovering. "I wouldn't want to do that again."[4][5][6]

Although tests on police and military volunteers have shown TASERs to function appropriately on a healthy, calm individual in a relaxed and controlled environment,[7] the real-life target of a TASER is, if not mentally or physically unsound, in a state of high stress and in the midst of a confrontation.[citation needed] According to the UK’s Defence Scientific Advisory Council’s subcommittee on the Medical Implications of Less-lethal Weapons (DoMILL), "The possibility that other factors such as illicit drug intoxication, alcohol abuse, pre-existing heart disease, and cardioactive therapeutic drugs may modify the threshold for generation of cardiac arrhythmias cannot be excluded.” In addition, Taser experiments “do not take into account real life use of Tasers by law enforcement agencies, such as repeated or prolonged shocks and the use of restraints".[8]

Police officers in at least five US states have filed lawsuits against Taser International claiming they suffered serious injuries after being shocked with the device during training classes.[9]

Medical literature reports that one police officer suffered spine fractures after being shocked by a Taser during a demonstration.[10]

Designation as torture device

The United Nations Committee Against Torture (CAT), an agency charged with overseeing the application of the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, arrived at the conclusion on November 23, 2007, that the use of the electric pulse Taser gun constitutes a "form of torture" and "can even provoke death." The U.N. has thus declared: "TASER electronic stun guns are a form of torture that can kill.[11]

Increased use of force

Critics claim that risk-averse police officers resort to using Tasers in situations in which they otherwise would have used more conventional, less violent alternatives, such as trying to reason with a cornered suspect.[12]

Current British police guidelines allow Tasers to be used pre-emptively, even where the suspect has no weapon. Where originally Tasers were only used when officers or the public were being threatened with a weapon, currently Tasers may and are being used without warning to surprise suspects before being arrested. On the 9th of April 2008 on BBC 1, the program “Traffic Cops” showed police surprising a pedestrian by shooting him with a Taser, before arresting him on suspicion of theft. The suspect had no weapon and was fully complying with the officers orders and posed no threat. The suspect was later found to be a completely innocent pedestrian.

Comparison to alternatives

Supporters claim that electroshock weapons such as Tasers are more effective than other means including pepper-spray (an eye/breathing irritant), batons or other conventional ways of inflicting pain, even handguns, at bringing a subject down to the ground with minimum physical exertion.[13]

Supporters claim that electroshock guns are a safer alternative to devices such as firearms. Taser International uses the term "non-lethal" as defined by the United States Department of Defense - which does not mean the weapon cannot cause death, but that it is not intended to be fatal.[14] Non-lethal weapons are defined as "weapons that are explicitly designed and primarily employed so as to incapacitate personnel or material, while minimizing fatalities, permanent injury to personnel, and undesired damage to property and the environment."

"Non-lethal" designation

While they are not technically considered lethal, some authorities and non-governmental organizations question both the degree of safety presented by the weapon and the ethical implications of using a weapon that some, such as sections of Amnesty International, allege is inhumane. As a consequence, Amnesty International Canada and other civil liberties organizations have argued that a moratorium should be placed on Taser use until research can determine a way for them to be safely used.[7] Amnesty International has documented over 245 deaths that occurred after the use of tasers.[15] Police sources question whether the taser was the actual cause of death in those cases, as many of the deaths occurred in people with serious medical conditions and/or severe drug intoxication, often to the point of excited delirium.[citation needed]

Validity of "excited delirium" term

Critics of taser use, however, argue that "excited delirium" is not a valid medical term[7] and is not listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.[16] Tasers are often used as an alternative to talking and waiting for a suspect to comply, striking the suspect with a baton or shooting them with firearms. Only the last two of which have a much higher chance of serious injury and death than the taser,[citation needed] even using the highest estimates of possible taser-related deaths. The term "less-lethal" is being used more frequently when referring to weapons such as tasers because many experts feel that no device meant to subdue a person can be completely safe. The less-lethal category also includes devices such as pepper spray, tear gas, and batons. One problem when comparing the Taser to other forms of force is that no precise statistics are kept in the U.S. on policing related deaths or the use of excessive force. In 2001, the New York Times reported that the U.S. government is unable or unwilling to collect statistics showing the precise number of people killed by the police or the prevalence of the use of excessive force.[17]

Manufacturer's risk acknowledgments

Breathing

Taser International has admitted in a training bulletin that repeated blasts of a taser can "impair breathing and respiration". Also, on Taser's website[13] it is stated that, for a subject in a state known as "excited delirium" (a controversial term in itself), repeated or prolonged stuns with the Taser can contribute to "significant and potentially fatal health risks".[9] In such a state, physical restraint by the police coupled with the exertion by the subject are considered likely to result in death or more injuries. Critics alleged that electroshock devices can damage delicate electrical equipment such as pacemakers, but tests conducted by the Cleveland Clinic found that Tasers did not interfere with pacemakers and implantable defibrillators.[18][19]

Cardiac arrests, lawsuits and effectiveness

On September 30, 2009, the manufacturer Taser International issued a warning and new targeting guidelines to law enforcement agencies to aim shots below the chest center of mass as "avoiding chest shots with ECDs avoids the controversy about whether ECDs do or do not affect the human heart" [20] Calgary Police Service indicated in a news interview that the rationale for the warning was "new medical research that is coming out is showing that the closer probe to heart distances have a likelihood, or a possibility, that they may affect the rhythm of the heart".[21]

Taser "recommended officers avoid tasing suspects in the chest area, citing the potential for cardiac arrests, lawsuits and effectiveness of the device." Central Texas Constable Richard McCain, whose deputy recently used a Taser weapon against an unarmed 72-year-old woman (resulting in a $40,000 lawsuit settlement), describes Taser's directive as "not really practical".[22]

Deaths and injuries related to Taser use

While their intended purpose is to circumvent the use of lethal force such as guns, the actual deployment of Tasers by police in the years since Tasers came into widespread use is claimed to have resulted in more than 180 deaths as of 2006.[23] It is still unclear whether the Taser was directly responsible for the cause of death, but several legislators in the U.S. have filed bills clamping down on them and requesting more studies on their effects.[24] Despite the growing controversy, a study funded by the U.S. Justice Department asserted that the majority of people tasered from July 2005 to June 2007 suffered no injury. A study led by William Bozeman, of the Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center, of nearly 1,000 persons subjected to Taser use, concluded that 99.7% of the subjects had either minor injuries, such as scrapes and bruises, or none at all; while three persons suffered injuries severe enough to need hospital admission, and two other subjects died. Their autopsy reports indicated neither death was related to the use of a Taser.[25] [26]

The head of the U.S. southern regional office of Amnesty International, Jared Feuer, reported that 277 people in the United States have died after being shocked by a Taser between June 2001 and October 2007, which has already been documented. He also noted that about 80% of those on whom a Taser was used by U.S. police were unarmed. "Tasers interfere with a basic equation, which is that force must always be proportional to the threat," Feuer said. "They are being used in a situation where a firearm or even a baton would never be justified."[27] A spokesperson for Taser International asserted that if a person dies from a "tasering" it is instantaneous and not days later.[28] Taser International announced that it is "transmitting over 60 legal demand letters requiring correction of... false and misleading headlines."[29]

Chronology

Several incidents have received publicity.

2004

A 2004 CBS News report described 70 deaths believed to be caused by the Taser, including 10 in August 2004 alone.[30] At that time Amnesty International reported the number at 150 since June 2001.[31]

2005

  • July 2005, UK. Police Tasered a man in hypoglycemic shock, believing that he was a potential security threat.[32]
  • A medical examiner ruled for the first time that a Taser was the primary factor in a death.[33]

2006

  • April 2006, USA. A 56 year old, wheelchair bound woman dies after ten Taser shocks, death ruled homicide.[34]:
  • October 2006, USA. A 17 year old boy died after being repeatedly Tasered by police.[35]
  • November 2006, USA. UCLA Taser incident

2007

In October and November 2007, four individuals died after being tasered in Canada, leading to calls for review of its use. The highest-profile of these cases was that of Robert Dziekański, a non-English speaking man from Poland who died in less than two minutes after being tasered by Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) at the Vancouver International Airport, October 14, 2007.[37][38] The tasering was captured on home video and was broadcast nationally.[39] This was followed by three further death-after-Tasering incidents in Montreal, Halifax, Nova Scotia, and Chilliwack, British Columbia, leading Amnesty International to demand Taser use end in Canada, as it had records of 16 other such deaths in the country.[40] On November 18, 2007, a 20-year-old man in Frederick, Maryland fell unconscious and died also right after being tasered.[31]

  • November 2007, USA. Christian Allen incident.[41]:

On Sunday 18 November 2007 in Jacksonville, Florida, Christian Allen, 21, was pulled over by police because his car radio was too loud. After a struggle he and a passenger escaped on foot, an officer gave chase, caught Allen and tasered him at least three times. Allen died later in custody.[41]

On December 12, 2007, in response to the death of Robert Dziekański, Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day requested that the federal Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP (CPC) prepare recommendations for immediate implementation. The CPC report recommended to "immediately restrict the use of the conducted energy weapon (CEW)" by reclassifying it as an "impact weapon."[42] The commission released its report on 18 June 2008; recommendations include restricting use to experienced officers (5 years or more), providing medical attention to those who have been zapped, improving previous documentation of specific deployment of the weapon, among other things.[43][44][45]

2008

  • On January 12, 2008, Baron Pikes died after being shocked nine times with a Taser by a police officer. Pikes was handcuffed and six of the shocks were administered within less than three minutes. His death was ruled a homicide by the medical examiner.[46]
  • April 24, 2008, USA. Kevin Piskura died after being stunned by a X-26 Taser for 10 seconds while interfering with a friend's arrest by Police in Oxford, Ohio. He was hospitalized after the confrontation and died five days later. Video and audio of the event was recorded by the X-26's mounted camera.[47]
  • In June 2008, a federal jury ordered Taser International to pay the family of Robert Heston, Jr., $6 million in punitive and compensatory damages for the 2005 death of the man who died a day after being shocked repeatedly by officers using Tasers. According to a press report, the jury "found that Arizona-based stun-gun manufacturer Taser International should have more effectively warned police that Taser shocks were potentially dangerous."[48]
  • July 22, 2008, Winnipeg, Manitoba, a 17 year old aboriginal teen died after being tasered during a standoff. The victim was carrying a knife during the incident[49]
  • September 24, 2008, USA. Iman Morales Taser incident:

On September 24, 2008 Iman Morales was tasered and died after falling 10 feet to the ground.[50]

Summit County, Ohio medical examiner Lisa J. Kohler cited Taser use as a cause of death in three cases, Mark D. McCullaugh, Dennis S. Hyde, and Richard Holcomb. Taser International sued, and on May 2, 2008, visiting judge Ted Schneiderman ordered the medical examiner to remove all references to "Taser" in the reports and change the cause of death in McCullaugh's case from "Homicide" to "Undetermined."[51]

2009

  • January 8, 2009, Martinsville, Virginia, a 17 year old boy, Derick Jones, was fatally tasered by officer R.L. Wray of the Martinsville Police Department. The autopsy revealed that Jones was in good health with a healthy heart and no pre-existing conditions, as well as no drugs other than alcohol in his system. The medical examiner ruled that his death was the result of a random cardiac arrhythmia, with no direct cause. However, she explicitly ruled out all direct causes of this arrhythmia except for the Taser, which she stated could not be definitively ruled out “as a causative or contributive factor” in Jones’ death. Critics have pointed to cases like these to show how Taser's aggressive litigation history involving medical examiners may have affected their rulings, or prevented them from decisively citing a Taser as the cause of death, despite the fact that all other causes were definitively ruled out.[52]
  • April 16, 2009, Robert Mitchell, a 5'2" 110 lb 16-year-old with a learning disability, was tasered and died after fleeing a vehicle in which he was a passenger during a routine traffic stop.[53]

Analysis

Between June 2001 and June 2007, there were at least 245 cases of deaths of subjects soon after having been shocked using Tasers.[15] Of these cases:

  • In 7 cases, medical examiners said Tasers were a cause or a contributing factor or could not be ruled out as a cause of death.
  • In 16 cases coroners and other officials stated that a Taser was a secondary or contributory factor of death.
  • In dozens of cases, coroners cited excited delirium as cause of death. Excited delirium has been questioned as a medical diagnosis.[54]
  • Several deaths occurred as a result of injuries sustained in struggles. In a few of these cases head injury due to falling after being shocked contributed to later death. Some police departments, like that of Clearwater, Florida, have tried to eradicate such incidents by prohibiting taser use when the suspect is in danger of falling.[55]

A study published by the American Journal of Cardiology found that California police departments that introduced Tasers experienced significant increases in the numbers of in-custody sudden deaths and firearm deaths in the first full year following deployment. The rates declined to predeployment levels in subsequent years. No significant change in the number of officer injuries was found.[56]

A study by the Potomac Institute concluded; "Based on the available evidence, and on accepted criteria for defining product risk vs. efficacy, we believe that when stun technology is appropriately applied, it is relatively safe and clearly effective. The only known field data that are available suggest that the odds are, at worst, one in one thousand that a stun device would contribute to (and this does not imply “cause”) death. This figure is likely not different than the odds of death when stun devices are not used, but when other multiple force measures are. A more defensible figure is one in one hundred thousand."[57]

After hearing many witnesses and briefs the report [58] by the Canadian House of Commons, Standing Committee on Public Safety and National Security makes 17 recommendations as a result the death due to the repetitive tasering of a Polish immigrant at the Vancouver International airport.

An investigation by the Canadian Press and Canadian Broadcasting Corporation found that one-third of those shot by a Taser by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police received injuries that required medical attention as a result. The news agencies used Freedom of Information requests to obtain the Taser-use forms filled out by RCMP officers from 2002 to 2007.[44]

The study [59] done by Pierre Savard, Ing., PhD., Ecole Polythechnique de Montreal, et al., for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC), indicated that the threshold of energy needed to induce deadly ventricular fibrillation decreased dramatically with each successive burst of pulses. The threshold for women may be less [60].

Although the TASER [61] is a programmable device, the controlling software does not limit: a) the number of the bursts of pulses and the time between bursts while the trigger is held down continuously, or b) the number of times the shock cycles can be repeated. Thus the design does not adequately reduce the likelihood that the victim's heart enters into a deadly ventricular fibrillation.

According to a study presented at the Heart Rhythm Society's 2007 Scientific Sessions, Tasers may present risks to subjects with implanted pacemakers.[62] However, a study conducted by the Cleveland Clinic in 2007 on a single animal determined that a standard five-second TASER X26 application "does not affect the short-term functional integrity of implantable pacemakers and defibrillators... The long-term effects were not assessed."[19]

A study conducted by electrical engineer James Ruggieri and published January 2006 in the Journal of the National Academy of Forensic Engineers measured a Taser's output as 39 times more powerful than specified. The study concluded that the discharge is sufficient to trigger ventricular fibrillation, a 50 percent risk according to electric safety standards. Ruggieri said that electricity breaks down skin tissue, decreasing its resistance and increasing current through the body.[3]

In 2006, the US National Institute of Justice began a two-year study into taser-related deaths in custody.[63]

A Chicago study suggests that use of the Taser can interfere with heart function. A team of scientists and doctors at the Cook County hospital trauma center stunned 6 pigs with two 40-second Taser discharges across the chest. Every animal was left with heart rhythm problems and two of the subjects died of cardiac arrest. One of the subjects died three minutes after being shot indicating, according to researcher Bob Walker, that "after the Taser shock ends, there can still be effects that can be evoked and you can still see cardiac effects."[64][65]

San Francisco cardiologist and electrophysiologist Dr. Zian Tseng told the Braidwood Inquiry that a healthy individual could die from a Taser discharge, depending on electrode placement on the chest and pulse timing. He said that the risk of serious injury or death is increased by the number of activations, adrenaline or drugs in the bloodstream, and a susceptible medical history. After Tseng began researching Tasers three years ago, Taser International contacted him, asking him to reconsider his media statements and offering funding.[66]

Other legal issues and court cases

According to Taser International, tasers are intended “to incapacitate dangerous, combative, or high-risk subjects who pose a risk to law enforcement officers, innocent citizens, or themselves”.[67]

Tasers are illegal or subject to legal restrictions on their availability and use in many jurisdictions.

Police officers in at least five US states have filed lawsuits against Taser International claiming they suffered serious injuries after being shocked with the device during training classes.[9]

Summit County, Ohio Medical Examiner Lisa J. Kohler cited Taser use as a cause of death in three cases, Mark D. McCullaugh, Dennis S. Hyde, and Richard Holcomb. Taser International sued, and on May 2, 2008, visiting judge Ted Schneiderman ordered the Medical Examiner to remove all references to "Taser" in the reports and change the cause of death in McCullaugh's case from "Homicide" to "Undetermined." [68]

On June 9, 2008 Taser International lost its first Product-Liability Suit.[69]

Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP - 18 June 2008 report

The Commissioner for Public Complaints made several recommendations regarding the use of tasers including:[70][71][72]

  • RCMP members with less than five years of operational experience should be prohibited from using Taser stun guns.
  • Individuals who are Tasered about whom police have no knowledge of underlying medical conditions receive prompt medical attention, thereby possibly saving their lives.

Compliance Strategy Group Independent Review of the RCMP - June, 2008

Compliance Strategy Group[6] (John Kiedrowski, Principal Consultant, Michael Petrunik and Ronald-Frans Melchers, Associate Consultants) conducted An Independent Review of the Adoption and Use of Conducted Energy Weapons by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police[7] that was completed in June 2008, but only released under access to information and privacy around September 12, 2008. The report is available from the RCMP under access to information, but is censored (e.g. no recommendations). The report as released by the RCMP may be found on the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation website www.cbc.ca. The Report reviews how the RCMP made the decisions to introduce the conducted energy weapons, training, policies and procedures, and accountability. The report is approximately 150 pages and provides an excellent analysis on how a police force adopted the Taser. The authors of the report argued that the police did not do their due diligences, is concerned about training and the issues of accountability. The report also pointed out that the police in Canada have misclassified the taser as a prohibited weapon whereas under the criminal code it is referred to as a prohibited firearm, and refers to excited delirium as "folk knowledge".

See also

References

  1. ^ USA Amnesty International's concerns about TASER use, Statement to the U.S. Justice Department inquiry into deaths in custody Accessed on December 2, 2007
  2. ^ Safety flaw in police's new gun December 9, 2001
  3. ^ a b "Study raises concerns over Tasers' safety", Arizona Republic, February 13, 2006
  4. ^ [1] 5 July, 2005
  5. ^ Top cop tastes a TASER May 17, 2007
  6. ^ BBC News Player - Police chief shot with TASER May 18, 2007
  7. ^ a b c "In depth: Tasers". CBC News. http://www.cbc.ca/news/background/tasers/. Retrieved 2007-11-12. 
  8. ^ Amnesty International’s continuing concerns about TASER use (in the USA) 2006
  9. ^ a b c Steven DiJoseph (November 21, 2005). "Arizona Sheriff Announces Test of Alternative to Taser Stun Gun" (reprint). http://orlando.injuryboard.com/defective-products/an-alternative-to-the-defective-and-deadly-taser.php. 
  10. ^ Police Officer Suffers Spine Fractures at Taser Demonstration September 4, 2007
  11. ^ Tasers a form of torture, says UN | The Daily Telegraph
  12. ^ The Taser Effect: Two years after HPD armed itself with the stun guns, questions linger over how and how often the weapon is being used Jan 14, 2007
  13. ^ a b Taser International, Inc., homepage
  14. ^ Police stun-gun may be lethal, firm admits October 3, 2005
  15. ^ a b County police getting Tasers May 23, 2007
  16. ^ Canadian Medical Association Journal - A knee in the neck of excited delirium
  17. ^ "When the Police Shoot, Who's Counting?". The New York Times. 2001-04-29. http://query.nytimes.com/gst/fullpage.html?res=9505E6DD1139F93AA15757C0A9679C8B63. Retrieved 2007-12-22. 
  18. ^ Cleveland Clinic Study Demonstrates TASER X26 Does Not Affect Short-Term Function of Implantable Pacemakers and Defibrillators May 16, 2007
  19. ^ a b Lakkireddy D, Khasnis A, Antenacci J, et al (2007). "Do electrical stun guns (TASER-X26) affect the functional integrity of implantable pacemakers and defibrillators?". Europace 9 (7): 551–6. doi:10.1093/europace/eum058. PMID 17491105. http://europace.oxfordjournals.org/cgi/content/full/9/7/551?ijkey=v5zONNAwEzrMZP5&keytype=ref. 
  20. ^ TASER Law Enforcement Warnings
  21. ^ Taser maker issues new guidelines
  22. ^ [2]
  23. ^ Parker Waichman Alonso LLP, Associated Press, Jun 14, 2006. Justice Department to review TASER deaths. Retrieved December 3, 2007.
  24. ^ KHAMPHA BOUAPHANH, AP file, Houston & Texas News. Retrieved 12-03-2007.
  25. ^ The study by William Bozeman of Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center
  26. ^ "Study Suggests Taser Use By US Police Is Safe", Catharine Paddock, Medical News Today, October 9, 2007. Retrieved January 31, 2008.
  27. ^ William Dunham, Reuters, October 8, 2006. [3] retrieved December 7, 2007.
  28. ^ Mark W. Kroll, Why do certain anti-police groups blame TASER for injuries or death, last updated November 6, 2007. Retrieved December 8, 2007.
  29. ^ Prime Newswire issued November 16, 2007
  30. ^ TASER Danger?, 70 Deaths After Use Of Stun Gun Lead To Questions Over Its Safety - CBS News
  31. ^ a b Man dies after police jolt him with stun gun - CNN.com
  32. ^ Terror police 'shot' man in coma, BBC News, 15 November 2007
  33. ^ Taser shocks ruled cause of death, by Robert Anglen, The Arizona Republic, July 30, 2005. Accessed November 25, 2007.
  34. ^ State rules Taser death homicide
  35. ^ Youth, 17, dies after police Taser incident Oct. 31, 2006
  36. ^ N.S. orders Taser review after inmate's death
  37. ^ Witness blames RCMP, Vancouver airport for death of Tasered man
  38. ^ CTV.ca | New details emerge in Vancouver airport death
  39. ^ Taser video shows RCMP shocked immigrant within 25 seconds of their arrival
  40. ^ AFP: Fourth Taser gun death in Canada: police
  41. ^ a b Officer Uses Taser During Struggle; Man Dies
  42. ^ "RCMP watchdog releases report on Taser use". CTV News. December 12, 2007. http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20071212/taser_report/20071212?hub=TopStories. Retrieved 2007-12-12. 
  43. ^ Rookie Mounties should be barred from using Tasers: watchdog, CBC News, June 18, 2008
  44. ^ a b One-third of people shot by Taser need medical attention: probe, CBC News, June 17, 2008
  45. ^ RCMP fire Tasers multiple times despite health hazards: probe, CBC News, June 11, 2008
  46. ^ "Man dies after cop hits him with Taser 9 times". CNN.com. http://www.cnn.com/2008/CRIME/07/22/taser.death/index.html. Retrieved 2009-01-15. 
  47. ^ Chicago man dies after Taser hit by Ohio police - Employees, Chicago - chicagotribune.com
  48. ^ "Taser held responsible in Salinas death", The (Monterey County) Herald, June 7, 2008
  49. ^ Man dies after being Tasered, CTV.ca, 2008-07-22
  50. ^ Statement from the New York City Police Department New York Times, September 2008.
  51. ^ Judge rules for Taser in cause-of-death decisions.
  52. ^ [4] Martinsville Bulletin, October 2009
  53. ^ [5] CNN, May 2009
  54. ^ Death by Excited Delirium: Diagnosis or Coverup? February 26, 2007
  55. ^ Another Taser Death - In Clearwater April 07, 2006
  56. ^ Lee, B. (2009). "Relation of Taser (Electrical Stun Gun) Deployment to Increase in In-Custody Sudden Deaths". The American Journal of Cardiology 103: 877. doi:10.1016/j.amjcard.2008.11.046. 
  57. ^ Stun Devices Report - PotomacInstitute.org
  58. ^ STUDY OF THE CONDUCTIVE ENERGY WEAPON–TASER June, 2008
  59. ^ Analysis of the Quality and Safety of the Taser X26 devices tested for Radio-Canada / Canadian Broadcasting Corporation by National Technical Systems,Test Report 41196‐08.SRC December 2, 2008
  60. ^ [http://www.highvoltageconnection.com/articles/ElectricShockQuestions.htm The Electric Shock Questions - Effects and Symptoms] 2005
  61. ^ TASER X26E Operating Manual
  62. ^ Study Shows Tasers Pose Potential Risks for Pacemaker Patients: Weapons May Cause Arrhythmias in Patients With Cardiac Devices May 11, 2007
  63. ^ Justice Department looks into deaths of people subdued by stun guns July 13, 2006
  64. ^ "Chicago study calls Taser's safety claims into question", CBC News, January 30, 2008
  65. ^ Dennis AJ, Valentino DJ, Walter RJ, et al (2007). "Acute effects of TASER X26 discharges in a swine model". J Trauma 63 (3): 581–90. doi:10.1097/TA.0b013e3180683c16. PMID 18073604. 
  66. ^ "Stun guns not risk free, inquiry told", CBC News, May 12, 2008
  67. ^ About TASER
  68. ^ Autopsy findings must be changed, judge rules. Akron Beacon Journal
  69. ^ Taser Loses 1st Product-Liability Suit; Jury Awards $6 Million
  70. ^ Rookie Mounties should be barred from using Tasers: watchdog
  71. ^ One-third of people shot by Taser need medical attention: probe
  72. ^ RCMP fire Tasers multiple times despite health hazards: probe

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