Mission Statement - De-Spinning the Pro-Taser Propaganda

Yeah right, 'Excited Delirium' my ass...


The primary purpose of this blog is to provide an outlet for my observations and analysis about tasers, taser "associated" deaths, and the behaviour exhibited by the management, employees and minions of Taser International. In general, everything is linked back to external sources, often via previous posts on the same topic, so that readers can fact-check to their heart's content. This blog was started in late-2007 when Canadians were enraged by the taser death of Robert Dziekanski and four others in a short three month period. The cocky attitude exhibited by the Taser International spokespuppet, and his preposterous proposal that Mr. Dziekanski coincidentally died of "excited delirium" at the time of his taser-death, led me to choose the blog name I did and provides my motivation. I have zero financial ties to this issue.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Dirty hands and a filthy mouth

CityNews - Two men arrested in a controversial confrontation with police have been convicted despite a judge's ruling that all the arresting officers lied in court. [LINK]

I could have sworn that I'd seen something about a dirty hands rule intended to prevent the bringing of the administration of justice into disrepute. I thought it was something along the lines of: any lies in court by the police as witnesses results in the accused being allowed to walk - no matter what.

The big explicit trade-off of this rule is that it is considered to be far more critical in the long run to discourage the police lying in court than the particular circumstances of any particular offense.

Perhaps the judge in this case thought that it was more important to deal with the petty offenders in this case than to protect the greater good of society. Hmmm...

More details:

Part of the confrontation was recorded on an attorney's voice-mail when Ahmed used his cell phone to call his lawyer. In the jumble of confusing noise, the men can be heard protesting they've done nothing wrong, while police officers sound increasingly agitated because they took too long to follow their orders. "Get out of the fucking car," one police officer says repeatedly.

"Sir, I'm coming out, sir. I'm coming out sir. Can you relax, can you relax?" Ahmed replies. But the officer continues to swear at the man, as Ahmed tells him, "I'm opening the door." That's followed by a loud scream as Ahmed is shocked with a taser.

"Get on the ground now or I'll let the dog in!" a second officer is heard threatening him.

The judge ruled the officers had used excessive force, but it didn't affect the outcome.

I expect that the judge's decision in this case, that the police lied under oath and their use of excessive force shouldn't affect the trial and the sentencing of the accused, will eventually be overturned.

It is obviously important to protect society from people that might be breaking the law, but it is normally considered - by people familiar with such issues - to be far, far, far and away more important to protect society from the lies under oath and physical excesses that might be committed by the police themselves (as has happened in this case).

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