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Taser®: A Means to Stem Police Brutality?

policemen holding clear fiber glass shield

Far too many people have been killed at the hands of police officers. News media and Black Lives Matter have raised awareness in recent years on the excessive use of force by law enforcement. Among suggestions to curb such trends, the use of less-lethal weapons has been advocated. Fatal police shootings such as that involving Walter Wallace Jr. in Philadelphia in October 2020 remain fresh in the public’s mind.

What Is a Taser?

A taser, or Conductive Energy Weapon (CEW), otherwise known as a stun gun, is an alternative to traditional firearms. It allows an officer to fire two small dart-like electrodes. These deliver a high-voltage shock to temporarily disable a suspect. CEWS have been used in the United Kingdom since 2003. While it’s illegal for citizens to possess them—penalties here include up to 10 years in prison—police officers must complete 18 hours of training and an annual refresher course every year.1

In the United States, the laws on permitting and using CEWS vary with each state. The concept has been around for decades. However, the first modern CEW was introduced in the early 1990s. Still, the number of fatal police shootings continues to increase; on average, about 1,000 people are fatally shot by police each year, according to The Washington Post.2

The Need for a Non-Violent Solution

Police departments have been arming police officers with CEWs or weighing the option of doing so. Such is the case in Philadelphia, where city legislators proposed putting millions of dollars into buying thousands of Tasers® and related equipment, such as battery packs, live cartridges, and holsters, as well as training.

The discussion follows the killing of Wallace on October 26th. However, the plan was delayed in November, so it’s not anticipated that Philadelphia police officers will be outfitted with stun guns before the end of 2020.3 However, about a third of them have completed relevant training.4

Training has been identified as one effective method of curbing police brutality, and controlling officer behavior, by the American Psychological Association. Other methods include peer intervention, candidate screening, and collecting data on officer behavior.5

When Can a Police Officer Use a CEW?

In general, police policy allows cops to use these weapons when reasonable and the circumstances warrant such action. Otherwise, the use of a CEW can be considered excessive and/or abusive force but they are generally considered safe when used appropriately.

Your Complete Source of Less Lethal Weapons

Enforcer Yellow Side Shot Cam Cart

At PhaZZer®, we provide some of the most effective and safest CEW models with features such as safety shut-down circuits, sight lasers, and rechargeable batteries. The PhaZZer® Enforcer is designed to comply with police guidelines. Continue browsing to learn more. For help finding the best CEW for your agency, feel free to contact Phazzer US at 833-742-9937 with any questions or to discuss your department’s specific needs.

Sources:

  1. https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-49405999
  2. https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/investigations/police-shootings-database/
  3. https://www.penncapital-star.com/criminal-justice/philly-city-council-hits-the-brakes-on-plan-to-arm-all-city-cops-with-tasers/
  4. https://www.phillytrib.com/news/local_news/city-council-looks-to-boost-police-funding-to-purchase-tasers/article_82bd624a-f8d6-53a9-bd98-8ce601532e11.html
  5. https://www.apa.org/monitor/2020/10/cover-police-brutality
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Riot Control Equipment Market Size By Product Analysis, Application, End-Users, Regional Outlook, Competitive Strategies And Forecast Up To 2026

Link to Article:

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From:
Edwyne Fernandes 3rd Market News Reports https://3wnews.org/contact-us/

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Defund Taser

The ongoing debate over defunding police departments has prompted many communities to rethink the role of police officers and even consider diverting some of their responsibilities to professionals with more appropriate training. But there’s an easy policy fix that could serve to eliminate one specific line-item in just about every police department’s budget in the country: Ban the Taser.

Link to Article:
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/defund-taser-131555659.html

From:
Matt Stroud Digital Trends, Taser Axon

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COVID-19 is Impacting the Civilian Less Lethal and Self Defense Weapons Market 2020

According to analysts at TMR, each key segment in the North America less lethal and self-defense weapons market also holds a number of patents – both filed and published – between 2012 and 2015, that are expected to influence the market’s growth rate between 2015 and 2023. The future growth of this market will also rely on the expressed potential of new entrants such as Salt Supply Co. and ARMA USA.

Link to Article:

COVID-19 is Impacting the Civilian Less Lethal and Self Defense Weapons Market 2020

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Phazzer Announces AXON/TASER Withdraws Unsupported Lawsuit

OMAHA, Neb., Oct. 15, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — PhaZZer announces that TASER/AXON (AAXN) filed a (now withdrawn) unsupported lawsuit in what appeared to be a last-ditch attempt to stop the PhaZZer Enforcer CEW and cartridges’ entry as the only viable and accepted competitor by US Law Enforcement. It appears that all other competitors have been silenced through litigation using the TASER ‘262 patent; which the USPTO Examiner declared invalid on all claims in its FINAL OFFICE ACTION on April 27th 2018 and AFFIRMED on appeal by Patent Trial And Appeal Board (“PTAB”) on September 27, 2019.  

Link to Article:
https://www.streetinsider.com/Globe+Newswire/Phazzer+Announces+AXONTASER+Withdraws+Unsupported+Lawsuit/16013610.html

From:
Globe Newswire, Press Releases Diana Robinson
PR@phazzer.info

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Taser International, Inc. v. Phazzer Electronics, Inc., 18-2057 (Fed. Cir. 2019)

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida in No. 6:16-cv-00366-PGB-KRS, Judge Paul G. Byron.

Link to Article:
https://www.courtlistener.com/opinion/4641903/taser-international-inc-v-phazzer-electronics-inc/

From:
From Free Law Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit.

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Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida in No. 6:16-cv-00366-PGB-KRS, Judge Paul G. Byron.

Link to Article:
http://www.cafc.uscourts.gov/sites/default/files/opinions-orders/18-2057.Opinion.7-23-2019.pdf

From:
From Free Law Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit.

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Police have killed more than 1,000 people with Tasers since 2000

Almost all 18,000 police departments in the U.S. issue their officers Tasers, or stun guns, as a non-lethal alternative to subdue people they might see as a threat. But in a five-part series, Reuters documented more than 1,000 incidents since 2000 in which their Tasers have killed people. Peter Eisler, who co-reported the series, joins Hari Sreenivasan from Washington.

Link to Article:
https://www.pbs.org/newshour/show/police-killed-1000-people-tasers-since-2000

From:
PETER EISLER, REPORTER, REUTERS, HARI SREENIVASAN, PBS NEWSHOUR WEEKEND ANCHOR: