Cop Tasers Hand-Cuffed Disabled Man

Video Shows Cop Tasering Already Restrained Disabled Man
Abuse of “last option before lethal force” continues

Steve Watson
March 12, 2008

Recently uncovered video of a disabled British Columbia man being shocked with a taser by a Royal Canadian Mounted Police officer has sparked controversy and once again brought the use of such weapons into the limelight.

The video, which was shot in 2004 but only recently released to legal representitives, shows John Dempsey, who suffered from a debilitating muscle disorder similar to Parkinson’s disease, being forced to the ground by two RCMP officers inside a Kamloops, B.C. RCMP detachment.

The video shows Dempsey being led into the booking room after being arrested for trying to intervene in the arrest of a friend whom he believed the police were being too heavy handed with.

Already handcuffed and subsequently shoved face down to the ground, an officer then fires a taser into Dempsey’s back at point blank range.

“I wasn’t resisting arrest, I calmly walked, he grabbed me, and said this will teach you not to [profanity] with us, that’s what he said,” Dempsey later commented.

Watch the Video:

Dempsey had initiated a lawsuit accusing the RCMP of excessive force, but was sadly killed in a traffic accident recently.

Read Full Article Here


Speeder Tasered by trooper on YouTube video gets $40,000 from state

Jason Bergreen
The Salt Lake Tribune
March 11, 2008

Flashback: Man Tased For Asking Officer Why He Was Stopped

A Vernal man shocked twice with a Taser during a traffic stop last year has accepted a $40,000 settlement in a lawsuit filed against the state and a Utah Highway Patrol trooper.The Utah Attorney General’s Office announced the settlement between Jared Massey and UHP trooper Jon Gardner on Monday.

“We think this is a legally defensible case because Trooper Gardner acted reasonably to avert a volatile and potentially dangerous confrontation on the side of a busy highway,” said Assistant Attorney General Scott Cheney, who represented Gardner. “We recognize, however, that this is a close case.”

The settlement comes on the heels of a decision by Tooele County prosecutors earlier this month that determined Gardner’s actions were not criminal. An internal UHP investigation also cleared the trooper.

Video of the trooper zapping Massey, taken by the trooper’s dashboard camera, came to prominence after Massey posted it on the Internet site YouTube. Since it was posted last year, it has been viewed more than 1.7 million times.

Massey’s attorney, Bob Sykes, said Monday the offer to settle the case was not the state’s first and that his client decided to take it.

Massey filed a lawsuit against Gardner in January alleging the trooper violated his civil rights when he zapped him during a traffic stop Sept. 14, 2007, on Highway 40 in Uintah County.

He was stopped for driving 61 mph in a 40 mph zone.
During the stop, Massey argued with Gardner about his speed and then refused to sign the citation. Massey then got out of his car and followed Gardner to his police car where he was asked to place his hands behind his back. When Massey refused, Gardner shocked him.

The suit said Massey fell screaming in pain after being shocked while Gardner taunted him by saying, “Hurts, doesn’t it?” Massey struck his head against the pavement and was zapped a second time because he was unable to immediately obey an order to turn over on his stomach, according to the suit.

“We thought the amount of force used was outrageous,” Sykes said Monday.

The settlement amount includes attorneys’ fees. The Attorney General’s Office says Massey has agreed to dismiss his lawsuit, all claims against Gardner and all potential claims against UHP, the Utah Department of Public Safety and the state.


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Police say they use Tasers on non-violent people

Police say they use Tasers on non-violent people
Internal documents show the weapon has been employed simply to get some suspects do what they are told

The Vancouver Sun
March 8, 2008

Vancouver police regularly use Tasers to subdue people who are unarmed and non-violent, according to internal reports released by the force.

On Friday, in response to a Freedom of Information request, VPD published on its website details of the about 150 times officers drew their Tasers from 2002 to early 2007.

The more than 70 pages of reports include cases where the electric shock weapon was drawn from its holster but not fired.

The reports cover cases in which the Taser was fired at a suspect from a distance and cases where it was used in “drive stun” mode — where a shock is administered by holding the device directly against a suspect.

The reports indicate that, in most cases in which Vancouver officers fired the Taser from a distance, the person was acting violently — from fighting with officers to threatening themselves or others with a weapon.

“[Officers] observed the male stabbing himself in the stomach with a pen,” reads one report from 2006. “When [officers] challenged the suspect, he ran at them and the [Taser] was fired. The suspect immediately fell to the ground and was handcuffed.”

However, in a number of cases, police used the Taser as soon as someone displayed a “fighting stance” or simply to get a non-violent suspect to do what they were told.

“Suspect fled from plainclothes members and resisted arrest when caught. Suspect was taken to the ground but refused to allow [officers] to handcuff him and held his arms underneath his body,” reads one report from 2006. “Strikes and open hand techniques were attempted but the suspect was still resisting. A [Taser] drive stun was applied to the suspect’s lower back and the suspect was then handcuffed.”

Jason Gratl, president of the B.C. Civil Liberties Association, said he was troubled to see Vancouver police are using the Taser as a compliance tool.

“The officers seem content to Taser individuals for lack of compliance with verbal commands or aggressive posturing,” said Gratl. “It is dead certain from these reports that Tasers are not merely an alternative to the use of sidearms but are used in practice as a convenient tool to gain physical control over individuals.”

There is debate over whether the Taser should be used to get non-violent suspects to comply with police orders.

In December, Paul Kennedy, head of the RCMP’s Commission for Public Complaints, published a report saying Tasers were used too often and recommended police use them only against suspects who are being “combative” or “posing a risk of death or grievous bodily harm” to themselves or others.

VPD Const. Jana McGuiness said the force believes the Taser is sometimes the safest option for controlling someone who is resisting arrest. “The problem is when you have a subject resisting to that degree, your chances of injuring yourself or that person escalates,” she said. “The Taser allows [police] to gain control with the minimum amount of injury to themselves or the suspect.”

According to the VPD, suicide attempts were an issue in about one in five Taser deployments and drugs or alcohol were a factor in one in three.

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Report: The truth about taser safety

Report: The truth about taser safety

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RCMP officer tasers 68-year-old stroke victim
December 18, 2007, 2:33 pm
Filed under: Canada, John Peters, Oppression, police brutality, Police State, RCMP, Taser Guns

Mountie to be disciplined for using Taser on double-parked senior

CBC News
December 14, 2007

An RCMP officer in Kelowna, B.C., will be disciplined for using a Taser stun gun on a 68-year-old stroke victim over a parking violation.

Supt. Bill McKinnon said the incident grew out of a simple traffic stop that escalated when John Peters drove away.

The senior admitted he first drove away when a police officer tried to give him a ticket for double parking.

Peters told CBC News he then stopped a short distance away. The officer stunned him with the Taser once while he was still in his car, and again when he got out, Peters said.

McKinnon said a stun gun should never be used when someone is seated in a car and the officer has been suspended from using the Taser. He will likely receive a written reprimand on his record, McKinnon said.

“We have determined the use of a conducted energy weapon while Mr. Peters remained seated in the driver’s seat of his vehicle was indeed inappropriate,” McKinnon said.

Peters told CBC News that the RCMP apologized to him on Thursday before issuing the public statement.

“We in turn regret this particular action, and have apologized to Mr. Peters over this tactical error in judgment. I have ordered a Code of Conduct investigation in order to address the issue,” said McKinnon.

However, the second use of the Taser on Peters, after he got out of the vehicle, was justified because Peters was combative and resisting arrest, McKinnon said.


Reaction to RCMP Taser Murder of Dziekanski

Reaction to RCMP Taser Murder of Dziekanski

Confused by a peaceful crowd, officer sprays mace “like an air freshener” over church group (with video)

Suspect dies in police custody

Family identifies man who died after taser strike….htm?StoryID=67806

Another Meaningless Taser Death: Police Use Of Stun Guns Out Of Control….ice-tasering-man-released/


Video of Vancouver Police Tasering Man Released

Another Meaningless Taser Death: Police Use Of Stun Guns Out Of Control
Confused? Distressed? Need Help? Get tasered

Steve Watson
November 15, 2007

The latest taser incident to be captured on film again highlights how fast our society is sleepwalking into a brutal police state where it is the norm for cops to react with extreme physical force and even torture towards anyone who acts out of the ordinary in any way whatsoever.

The video, released Wednesday, shows the brutal tasering and consequent death of Polish immigrant Robert Dziekanski last month at Vancouver airport.

Captured by a member of public, the footage shows the moments before police arrived and murdered Dziekanski by tasering him three or four times.

The film quite clearly reveals that Mr Dziekanski is suffering some sort of anxiety attack in the airport as he is breathing very heavily, sweating profusely and appears to be attempting to barricade himself in an empty area separated by a glass cordon. Clearly the barricade he fashions is not going to stop anyone getting through and appears to be more a cry for help.

Dziekanski at first seems to respond to passers by who attempt to calm him down but he clearly cannot understand what they are saying and becomes more distressed. After throwing a wooden table at the glass cordon and knocking a computer to the floor, the police arrive and within seconds taser Dziekanski sending him flailing to the ground screaming in agony.

The police then surround him and as the officers yell at Dziekanski to stop moving, which is impossible when 50,000 volts of electricity are moving through your body, a voice can be heard yelling “hit him again, hit him again.” The four large officers then jump on top of him, restraining his arms and sitting on his head. One officer appears to strike Dziekanski in the head with a baton.

Eventually Dziekanski stops moving and dies.

Is this in any way justifiable whatsoever?

The video also contradicts the officers’ report which states that the man they encountered was out of control. Police also said even after he was tasered once, he remained combative. But the video shows that after the first shot, Dziekanski fell to the ground and was writhing in agony.

An investigation is ongoing and the official cause of death has not been made public.

The fact that police immediately reach for tasers now in any delicate situation, even a non threatening one, speaks volumes about the society we now live in.

In another disgusting case reported today a man who slipped into a diabetic coma on the top deck of a bus in Leeds, England has described how he was used for electric stun gun “target practice” after he “failed to respond to instructions” and police “mistook him for a suicide bomber”.

Read Full Article Here

Tasered to Death by the RCMP! – The Story of Robert Dziekanski…kanski.html

Video of Vancouver Taser incident shows police zapping man within seconds…l/airport_taser_2

UK police tasered diabetic – because they thought he was a suicide bomber…99&in_page_id=1770