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TASER Electronic Control Devices _ECD's_

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					       TASER
 Electronic Control
Devices (ECD / ECW)
          “Protecting Life”

   Town Meeting Article 34 (Id 67)
            May 2011
          Justification for Taser
   No evidence that other law enforcement force
    option is safer than a normal use of a Taser.
   Tasers are more effective in facilitating capture,
    control and restraint than other force options
   Tasers are generally safer per se and are usually
    safer than other force options
   Courts have held that ECW’s are not excessive
    force per se
   Tasers are saving lives, reducing injuries to
    officers and suspects, and reducing excessive
    force claims
    2011 – Society’s View of Force
            Police Officers should:
 Use the least amount of      Know the difference
  force                         between a person who:
 Use the least injurious       – Presents an intentional
  force option                    immediate threat of harm.
                                – Is fleeing from serious
 Be patient and                  physical harm
  understanding                 – Needs medical or mental
 Be tolerant of people           health crisis assistance
  acting out
    2011 – Society’s View of Force
 Officers are often judged on outcomes of force
  used (death, serious injury)
 Officers should not hurt a person whose
  intentions are not immediately threatening
 Non-violent people should not be injured- people
  who need to be controlled may be:
      A. Acting as they are due to a medical crisis
      B. Acting due to serious psychological
      distress
      C. Drug and alcohol abusers
             Common Quotes
   The news has several ready made quotes
    for Officers’ use of deadly force
    – “Why couldn’t they shoot him / her in the leg”
    – “Why couldn’t they have sent a dog”
    – “Why didn’t they let me speak with him / her”
    – “They didn’t even try to talk with him / her”
    – “Why couldn’t they have tased him /
      her”
    What is our objective for using
                force?
   Defensive Force – Subject reasonably
  perceived by the officer as an immediate threat
  of harm
 Capture Force – Subject fleeing from serious
  (physical harm) crime & officer is justified in
  subduing subject
 Restraint Force – Force to facilitate restraint
 Compliance Force – Force to gain compliance
  to commands
          ECW how it works
 It captures skeletal
  muscles
 The electrical current
  “tends to favor” the
  grain of the muscle by
  10:1 going against
  the grain, so current
  tends to stay on the
  outside
 4000 ECW uses per
  week in the US.
               ECW Deployment
   Probe deployment                 Drive Stun
    – Taser ,generally, is            Deployment (not
      more than a non-                recommended)
      serious or trivial use of       – Less than the probe
      force but less than               deployment
      deadly force
                                      – Amount of force more
    – Taser is higher force             on par with pain
      than OC and baton                 compliance techniques
ECW Force – Probe Deployment

   Pain: excruciating, intense pain felt throughout
    entire body
   Probes penetrate up to ½” into body
   Causes Neuro Muscular Interference (NMI)
   Taser “Commandeers” muscles and nerves
   Causes temporary paralysis (seconds)
   Causes uncontrolled fall
   Immediate relief occurs after application ends
      Drive Stun Deployment
 Drive Stun Deployment (Not
  Recommended)
 Pain: only transitory, localized
 No NMI
 Non-incapacitating effect
 Without incapacitating muscle contractions
ECW Safety Points
              ECW Safety Points
 50,000 volts NEVER goes through the body- actually
  600 volts
 The pulse has less peak current than a strong static
  shock
 The skeletal muscles tend to shield the heart from
  current
 99.75% of the time suspects have no significant
  injury as a result of using the device (DOJ)
    Source: Bozeman, W., et al. Safety and Injury Profile
    of Conducted Energy Weapons Used by Law
    Enforcement Officers Against Criminal Suspects,
    Annals of Emerg. Med. 2009
        ECW Safety Points
 The  pulse is 50-200 times too short
  to efficiently stimulate the heart
 It has less than HALF of the current
  allowed by the electric fence
  standards
 It has less current than some pain
  blocking stimulators
                    Officer   Suspect                     Force
     Dept                                Lethal Force
                   Injuries   Injuries                  Complaints
                     
  Orlando, FL                  50%           *             *
                   60%
                     
   Austin, TX                  80%           *          32%
                   53%
  Phoenix, AZ         *        67%  54%                   *
                                            14
 Columbus, OH                  24%                      25%
                   23%                    “saves”

   Charlotte-
Mecklenburg, NC
                   59%  79% 19 “saves”                    *

Orange County FL   80%          *        78%              *
    ECW’s usually more effective
     than other force options:
   Every other force option (Baton, OC,
    Handgun) uses pain/discomfort compliance or
    traumatic injury to facilitate capture, control
    or restraint.
   ECW’s are usually safer force options and less
    injurious to suspects and officers.
   ECW’s can reduce the use of deadly force
    ECW Smart Use Guidelines
 Policy must be approved by EOPSS
 Clearly delineated force standards insure
  proper use and accountability
 Accomplishes the lawful objective of the
  minimum (least amount of) force goal
     ECW’s have more accountability
    features than other force options
 Records every safety activation, trigger
  pull, arc, etc.
 Taser cam records video and audio
 Records pulse by pulse determination of
  electrical discharges
 Data download and AFID evidence
 MASH Test to determine causes of in
  custody deaths where taser was deployed
    – Reliable forensic tool to determine excited
      delirium as a cause of death
Taser Cam
                    Cost Savings
 Fewer officer-hours lost to injury
 Fewer investigations of injuries to subjects
 Fewer excessive force claims
 Use has reduced excessive force litigation
  by 54% -Michigan Municipal Risk Management Authority
    Study 2004 – 432 Taser deployments, 40 + agencies, 1 injury
    requiring hospitalization ZERO claims of excessive force
Taser in Action
         Supporters of ECW's
 U.S. Department of Justice – Office of
  Community Oriented Policing Services Director
  Bernard K. Melekian
 Police Executive Research Forum, Executive
  Director Chuck Wexler
 Dr. Alex Eastman, M.D. Trauma Surgeon and
  reserve officer with Dallas PD
 ACLU Atty. Scott Greenwood, National Expert on
  Police Use of Force cases and authority on Taser
  related legal issues.
Interview of Atty. Scott Greenwood
          on May 5, 2011
 Atty. Greenwood has the most legal
  experience in the use of these weapons in
  the ACLU
 The only Constitutional Lawyer present at
  creation of 2011 ECW guidelines (PERF,
  DOJ)
 Studied policies and implementation in
  almost all jurisdictions in the country
       ACLU Atty. Greenwoods
             Opinions
 ECW’s are less injurious
  than less lethal and O.C.
 Every Department that
  has them has seen a
  decrease in injuries to
  officers and subjects
 They decrease and
  eliminate confrontations
  that can escalate to
  deadly force.
     ACLU – Atty. Greenwood
 “I am convinced they present the IDEAL
  compromise when having to resort force.”
 ECW’s offer the lowest risk vs. highest
  reward.
 “In the future, suits may come from
  departments not using Tasers when they
  would have been appropriate.”
    ACLU – Atty. Scott Greenwood
   Addressed the concerns of injuries and death as
    a result of ECW’s;
    – In his research 30-40 deaths that are attributed to
      ECW’s, The medical Examiners did not rule out other
      contributing factors in causes of death.
    – Atty. Greenwood stated, “Statistically, this number is
      insignificant, The facts are overwhelmingly in favor to
      get them. Every department that has them has seen,
      without exception, a decrease in injuries to officers
      and subjects.
             Final Words
–“There is Zero justification to be
 against these weapons.”                  (May,5 2011)




       Attorney Scott Greenwood
       General Counsel to American Civil Liberties Union
       Work: (513) 943-4200
       Email: Law@ScottGreenwood.com
I’m a Believer!
   May 7, 2011

				
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