Regarding: Tasers seen as option in 1/3 of police shootings
Original long version of my response is here: [Taser pros and cons - do the math]
Short version is as follows:
1) Police guns and bullets are (as shown by this study) lethal about 50% of the time.
2) Tasers are ineffective about 30% of the time.
Combine these factors, and these five potential opportunities to use a taser to actually save a life becomes about TWO. In 5 years.
["5 opportunities" times ~50% bullet-lethality = 2.5 opportunities for a taser to actually save a life. Next, 2.5 times 70% taser effectivity rate = 1.75 lives saved per five year period covered by study. Rounding thus up to "two" is generous.]
But if SF Police had been 100% equipped with tasers in 2005, then they would have actually used tasers not once per year, but probably about ONCE PER DAY!
Most jurisdictions use tasers at about 100x the rate of gun fire. It varies, but it's a good number.
And even with a taser-associated death rate "that can be rounded to zero" (percent), you're still looking at more deaths by taser (perhaps 7) than the lives that might be saved (2).
Not even mentioning the karmic balance problem of redistributing the risk of death to non-violent people.
Not to mention the vast expense of tasers and lawsuits.
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