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.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

'High'? Nobody said anything about 'high'.

(AP) - A study released in June by the National Institute of Justice didn't find any "conclusive medical evidence" that exposure to so-called conducted energy devices, including tasers, carries a high risk of serious injury or death. [LINK]

Read that extract very carefully and you will realize that the NIJ report is perfectly consistent with a low to moderate (for example 5%) risk of death once the X26 taser darts land on the victim's chest (after all the denominator washing is excluded).

I firmly agree that there is no evidence of a high risk of death (that's duh-obvious). A high risk of death (say 60% for example) is simply not supported by the facts. But a low to moderate risk (in the 5% range) certainly is compatible with the facts. If Taser will admit to a risk of death in the 5% range (for darts on chest, once all the denominator washing is removed), then I'll accept that.

And given the reality that the risk is non-zero, then we shouldn't be surprised when the Taser is occasionally found to be The Cause of Death. And those "few deaths" will still be more than sufficient to bankrupt Taser.

Although 5% (for example) is a long way from 100% (twenty times better), 5% is actually infinitely larger than 0%.

Low to moderate is not zero.

And nobody ever said anything about 'high'.

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