Mission Statement - De-Spinning the Pro-Taser Propaganda

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

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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.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Taser, taser, taser = stupid, stupid, stupid

A moth is not an intelligent creature. That's why a moth will spend an entire evening banging his wee little head into a light fixture over and over again. The idiot moth mindlessly expects the results to improve while he uses the same approach over and over again. Moths are stupid.

Here are some of the taser incidents (involving payouts) in Escambia County and Pensacola [LINK]:

• In 2007, the Pensacola City Council paid a $25,000 settlement to a man who was shot with a stun gun by Pensacola police officers during a traffic stop. The man was pulled over because an officer couldn't see the decal on his license plate. After arguing with police, the man was pulled from his car, shocked with the stun gun and arrested on charges of resisting arrest. The man later was found not guilty of resisting officers, and the traffic charges were dropped.

• In 2006, the Escambia County Sheriff's Office paid a $62,500 settlement to a man who said a deputy "had a smile on his face" when he shot him with a stun gun in 2003. The man saw officers making an arrest at his friend's apartment in 2003 and was shocked when he commented that officers were being rough.

• In 2004, Deputy Charles Raymond Dix was accused of using a Taser five times on a woman in a Walmart parking lot. Dix later pleaded guilty to depriving the woman of her civil rights and was sentenced to five years' probation. The Sheriff's Office paid a $250,000 settlement to the woman.

• In a 2003 case also involving Dix, the Sheriff's Office paid a $150,000 settlement to a man who was shocked with a Taser as he tried to comfort his wife after a traffic accident. Dix shocked the man four times in a parking lot during the incident but did not face criminal charges.

Extrapolate this to all the jurisdictions across the USA (and Canada), and it is extremely difficult to maintain the position that tasers are not a big problem.

Political decision makers and police leadership should really take advantage of the Canadian $3.7M Braidwood Inquiry. The Braidwood taser inquiry report made some logical and self-evidently correct conclusions, and provided numerous common-sense recommendations.

Or keep banging your wee little head against the light...

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