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.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Rolando Ruiz tasered in neck for at least 13 seconds

More on the Rolando Ruiz tasered in neck while hands on hood incident.

(Previous post: Man Tasered in neck for no apparent reason. [LINK] )

Mr. Ruiz was tasered in the neck while his hands were clearly shown to be firmly on the patrol car hood. This incident occurred on April 30, 2009, near the Minneapolis Second Precinct off Central Avenue.

What I noticed is the clock:

Hopefully soon-to-former [see update just below] Officer Todd Lappegaard [LINK] applies the taser to Mr. Ruiz's neck at 22:52:18 and holds it there while Mr. Ruiz falls to the ground screaming in agony. It continues until at least 22:52:31 when the released video terminates.

That's at least 13 seconds of taser torture. For no apparent reason.

UPDATE2 "15 seconds" See [LINK]

UPDATE (WCCO) - The FBI will be reviewing dash cam video of a Minneapolis police officer using a taser on a man as a possible civil rights violation, according to a statement released by the Minneapolis police chief Tuesday evening. Chief Tim Dolan said the Minneapolis City Attorney will also review the case for possible criminal charges against the officer. [LINK]

Video available at [LINK].

See also Jonathan Turley [LINK].

Fair Use screen capture

It been a while since the 'Getting it Right' blog [LINK] has nominated a Taser Nazi of the Week [LINK], but I can guess who will be in the running...

UPDATE: And the winner is: [LINK]

PS: Minneapolis? That's Kroll's neck of the woods, isn't it? And other known minions. I wonder if they feel any embarrassment at all? Any? Hello?


Unknown said...

While it looks very bad for the officer what you don't see is that that officer ordered the 'victim' to the ground several times prior to the officer turning on his camera for his personal safety. It should also be noted that this 'victim' is obviously much larger than the officer in question and he is a snitch for MPD. The 'victim' had become aggitated because an officer had earlier taken his drugs and money in a separate incident causing him to damage vehicles at the police precinct. The 'victim' had been harrassing officers for hours prior to the incident. How sad it is that we turn the tables on our officers and pass judgement without all the facts.

Excited-Delirium.com said...

Those details are not really a surprise. But they don't really justify what is seen on the video.

A society should be judged on how they treat the worst and the lowest. Basic civil rights are obviously most important for those that really need them.

In fact, some of your points ("...snitch..." and "...harrassing officers for hours prior...") arguably provide evidence that the lengthy 15 second taser to the neck was applied as street level punishment or retribution for some of those alledged earlier events.

Let's assume it wasn't street-level punishment. Then we can ask the question: What would be different if it was?

And is there an agreed weight and height where subjects suddenly have fewer rights than those that are smaller?

And I strongly disagree with using the taser to force compliance. Lawful "force" is a noun. Using extreme pain to force (verb) compliance is essentially indistinguishable from torture.

It is an unfortunate accident of English that these two words share one spelling. It causes no end of confusion.

I invite you to review the right hand column. If you disagree, then grab a blog of your own and write a rebuttal.

Erik said...

I had that same joker-John on my blog. Didn't take me long to delete his post :)

"'victim', ..without having all the fact", we know what that means; he's a cop, probably one with taser stocks (what police officer doens't have those?).

The police tends to make up their own facts when needed to justify tasering the hell out of somebody, so it's easy for them to come up with such a response. (think Dziekanski).



Unknown said...

If the man was ordered to the ground several times prior to the tasering then the man was non-compliant. Officers are authorized to use non-lethal force in situations of non-compliance. I don't think a rational person would want to change that. Could you imagine?

Officer: get on the ground!
Suspect: NO!
Officer: Oh, well, okay. Carry on.

Excited-Delirium.com said...

Okay, I'm going to write slowly so that you can try to keep up.

"Officers are authorized to use non-lethal force..."

The word "force" in your phrase (please read it carefully) is a noun. They're entitled to apply lawful "force" (the noun).

In practical terms, this means that they're allowed to apply force to move the subject.

The five letters f-o-r-c-e also represent another word, "force" (the verb).

They're also permitted to cause minimal pain (arm locks) as a form of pain compliance. But the taser is off-the-scale. It is some 2000 times more than intense pain. It may be the most painful torture device ever invented.

Using severe pain, electro-torture from the taser, is clearly EXACTLY the same thing as using the glowing end of a lit cigarette to apply torture to force (the verb) compliance. Probably worse. Probably more risk of death.

My "Glowing Cigarette Challenge" has been on this blog for more than a year. Nobody but nobody has provided a rebuttal.

What Officer Lappegaard should have done is call for back-up (if he is so poorly trained that he is scared of Ruiz), and then they could apply lawful force (noun) to arrest Ruiz.

Now, this logic cuts both ways. If, during the application of lawful force (the noun) Ruiz begins to attack the police, then they're entitled to defend themselves using any means at their disposal, including a bullet, or a taser, or a fricken flame-thrower.

To be clear - this is not a get-out-of-arrest trick, and it is not an invitation to attack police.

You may think I'm being silly with this recommended approach. But here is the critical difference.

This method ensures that non-violent folks are not taser tortured to prevent some perceived (often racial-motivated bias) risk of violence.

Lappegaard's method means that folks are taser tortured because they're big and scary, or because they're from a visible minority, and they aren't little middle class white folks.

This distinction isn't some hypothetical nonsense, it is the way the law reads. It is basic common sense that is perfectly obvious to anyone except the right-wing nut-job law-and-order freaks that need to get a brain and have it installed.

You can disagree all you want. But start by answering the Taser "Glowing Cigarette Challenge". If you cannot answer that simple comparison and explain the difference, then your position has no foundation at all. You've been fooled by the "high tech" (sic) window dressing on good old fashioned electric shock torture.

Would it more clear if Lappegaard fished out from his car's trunk a high voltage power supply, some booster cables and a pair of damp sponges? Would that visual image of electro-torture make it more clear for you?

You might also wish to review the exact wording of the legal definition of torture. Using a taser to force (verb) compliance is clearly in keeping with that definition. Which is why the UN called taser "an instrument of torture that can kill".

People with your view are a greater risk to civilized society than all the terrorists in the world combined.

You need to go back and review the lessons from your Grade 6 'Civics' class.

Thanks for your comment.

Doc. Rhino said...

I just stumbled across your blog while trying to find some more information on this story. I agree completely that there are some serious misunderstandings involved with the use of "less-than-lethal" weapons and munitions. The term "less-than-lethal" does not mean nonlethal, but tazers as well as other weapons in this category are often mistaken for nonlethal alternatives. This confusion, in my opinion, is a major cause of the overuse and misuse of tazers and "less-than-lethal" weapons. There needs to be stricter regulations on these items, as well as more training on appropriate use of the weapons. All the training in the world, of course, will not make up for poor hiring practices, bureaucratic protection of bad officers, & institutionalized "blue wall of silence" practices.

Thanks for the blog, I will be checking back from time to time.