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Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Taser mishap costs Arizona firm $10 million

The taser gun has been considered the primary choice for subduing perpetrators without lethal force, however, 127 lawsuits have been filed against the 50,000-volt weapon for killing a relative of their family. In every case except one, lawyers have successfully argued that the victim's drug use or pre-existing cardiac condition would have killed them from trauma from being physically detained by police officers in any circumstance.

On July 19th, the TASER firm was required to pay $10 million to the family of Darryl Turner, a 17-year-old resident of Charlotte, North Carolina who died after a 37 second prolonged exposure to the shot of a taser gun.

The taser gun has proven it can be lethal, killing about 450 people since 2001. Yet, the court's ruling accuses the negligence of the firm for properly training officers in correct use of the weapon, rather than the lethality of the weapon itself. 
Turner was shot when police were called after Turner had an argument with the manager. The probes were shot into his chest when Turner lunged at a police officer. Officers are taught to only use a 5 second burst shot at an area other than the chest, due to the close proximity to the heart. The officer who fired the gun however, shot at the chest AND applied 37 seconds of the shock.

Sadly, just hours after the Turner verdict, a police officer in the same department tased a 21-year-old man who died a few hours later. Officials are considering removing the high energy weapon from police officers belts.

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