The Florida Highway Patrol have cleared 267-pound Trooper Daniel Cole of wrongdoing and have released a disturbing dash cam video that captured him tasing a 100 pound, 20 year old handcuffed girl in the back as she fled.
The Florida Department of Law Enforcement determined Trooper Daniel Cole's "use of force" was justified when he tased the woman last September at the FHP Pinellas Park Substation and cleared him of wrongdoing.
This tasering happened in September 2011 and serves as another example of how tasering [or tazing] can cause severe injuries or even death.
Did Trooper Daniel Cole of the Florida Highway Patrol intend to irrevocably harm Daniel Maudsley? No, I cannot conceive of a reason he would desire to put her into a vegetative state or an intent to harm her.
I do think he intended to stop her. And to that end, he did.
Although Taser International has been banking on the "Less than Lethal" terminology for their "shocking" weapons, the taser may be "less than lethal" when compared to a gun; Not less lethal than common sense or commensurate responses by law enforcement.
But media and news outlets have been - for years - reporting a growing use of tasers NOT as replacements for guns, but as replacements for common sense police response.
And if you think Tasers cannot kill, cannot be a direct cause of death, you would be wrong. As well as stories of children, blind and deaf people, pregnant women, special needs children and special needs people getting tasered, there have also been cases of people who have been non-responsive during medical emergencies getting tasered by trained law enforcement.
A Taser trainer once said, "It is impossible for a taser to cause death." This was said, I believe, as a real belief as opposed to a corporate denial of truth. As long as this is believed, tasers will increasingly be used as compliance tools.
If a police officer would not pull his gun out and be prepared to shoot a bullet into another human being, is shooting 50,000 volts of electricity into another human being agreeable to our collective social conscience?
Amnesty International is doing its best to keep a running tally of taser deaths but considering one particular case - that made the media - in which a judge made a coroner redact her mention of Taser as cause contributions of 3 deaths, we do not really know the accurate count of taser deaths in the United States.
And to the best of my knowledge, AI's tally does not include indirect causes [ie, brain dead like the Danielle Maudsley above] or those taserings in which substantial harm is inflicted.
Everyone knows what guns are capable of but despite opinions on tasers, there are facts on taser use in which trained police officers and most of the public are unaware, still believing, "Tasers are a non-lethal alternative."
"Taser training materials are mostly provided by Taser International, the private company that makes the weapon." ~ from ACLU's "Tasers No Longer a Non-Lethal Alternative for Law Enforcement"
What could possibly go wrong?