TWEED/Byron police officers only fired a taser seven times between October 2008 and March this year.
Figures collected through the NSW Police Force Weapons and Tactics Policy and Review unit showed while a taser had been drawn by police 12 times, there had only been seven deployments.
And while that number may seem low, Tweed/Byron Local Area Command Acting Superintendent Greg Jago said the taser technology had provided a necessary non-lethal weapon capable of subduing people that had been otherwise unavailable to police before the introduction of the electroshock weapon in October, 2008.
“Prior to the approval and issue of taser to the NSW Police Force our options were either baton, oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray, or lethal force by use of a handgun,” Act Supt Jago said.
“It’s now filled that gap.”
Act Supt Jago said only police who had been trained in the use of taser were able to carry one, and all taser deployments were filmed with a digital camera attached to the weapon.
“Every first response vehicle has at least one officer with a taser,” he said. “Once a taser is deployed and the person becomes compliant they are then handcuffed and an ambulance is called to check on the person.”
Between October, 2008 and March, 2011
TWEED/BYRON LOCAL AREA COMMAND
RICHMOND LOCAL AREA COMMAND
source: Tweed Daily News
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