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Report: Taser deployed in Palo Alto arrest

Original post made on Nov 29, 2012

After nearly two years of silence, Palo Alto Police Department Tasers buzzed to life earlier this year with officers deploying the stun guns on two occasions, according to a new report from Independent Police Auditor Michael Gennaco.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Thursday, November 29, 2012, 9:29 AM

Comments (9)

Posted by Marty
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 29, 2012 at 1:11 pm

Gee, no wonder no one wants to be a police officer! Our police face crazy people with guns every day and to have to worry about whether one gave a verbal warning before using the taser is just absurd. In pre-tazer times an officer might have just swung a heavy night-stick at the suspect and broken an arm, leg or rib. Please officers, save your own life, taze away!

Posted by Chrisc
a resident of College Terrace
on Nov 29, 2012 at 1:36 pm

Before someone jumps in with a ludicrous comment about police brutality, let ne say that I agree with Marty. Much better to taze than shoot. I commend the PA police for not having some of the shoot-first (and to kill) incidents some other cities have had.

Posted by coooper
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2012 at 3:00 pm

Tasers do have to be considered a deadly force. Tasers can result in death, as has been reported in the news quite frequently. The question should be, does policy restrict usage to instances where deadly force would be called for. In narrowly interpreting police policy, the independent auditor has become a spokesman for the police and not a representative of the public at large, as is needed.

Posted by Ducatigirl
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 29, 2012 at 3:59 pm

Tazers can be lethal. They are usually a good alternative to a gun, but not enough judgment is used in many cases of deploying one.

Several years ago, in Union City, the police force there tazed a man who was standing in a creek, in water, and the poor man was electrocuted to death. It should have been a no-brainer. The victim was an unemployed, drunk, illegal alien who left behind a wife with a terminal disease as well as several children. I actually saw this as I was bikeriding by, then read in the paper the next day that the man was DOA at Washington Hospital in Fremont.

After this, I decided it might be that the police need more training on using these devices. They do target practice with their guns regularly, should there not be more practice of some sort with Tazers? Does it make a difference where the victim is hit with the barbs?

Posted by HUTCH 7.62
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Nov 29, 2012 at 9:45 pm

Gee who cares just another day for Oakland, San Francisco, East Palo Alto, Richmond, Vallejo, San Jose, or Bart police. AS education, blue collar jobs, and moral values plummet in the bay area you better get used to this.

Posted by Facts
a resident of Community Center
on Nov 29, 2012 at 10:02 pm

How much are still paying for gennaco? I do not recall any useful information being derived from his reviews. Perhaps a case by case basis review would save the city money. His criticizes for no "warning" but then says it is ok and understandable. All while collecting city money to state the obvious.

Not specifically for tasers, but did some homework and many of these deaths that are speculated to have been caused by tasers seem to have ultimately been ruled to be only a slight contributing factor, if at all. Sometimes Cops need our tentative support rather than "deciding they need more training" with no knowledge of what that may currently be.

Posted by bill
a resident of Barron Park
on Nov 29, 2012 at 10:32 pm

I am pleased to see some rational comments above. Too often there is a knee jerk reaction, "the police are completely in the wrong", or words to that effect.

Sure, there have been deaths caused by tasers. But there have been far more deaths caused by guns which can cause terrible wounds and cripple a person for life if they do not kill.

Nationwide in the last few months officers have been shot and killed without warning. I agree with Marty - the police person should act to save his/her own life if there is any doubt about the bad guy's intentions.

Posted by Jim Brown
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Nov 30, 2012 at 11:16 am

This report is available for public viewing through the link listed as "report." I am curious why Palo Alto Online neglected to mention the fact that the suspect's blood results came back positive for cocaine. Isn't that an important point to note?

Posted by just thinkin'
a resident of Midtown
on Nov 30, 2012 at 5:42 pm

People have been severely beat with Maglights similar to those used by police. To protect the pulbic, do we take away flashlights???????

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