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Author Topic: 10 Year Old Tasered in Martinsville, Indiana.  (Read 6441 times)

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Offline Pumpkin Seeds

Re: 10 Year Old Tasered in Martinsville, Indiana.
« Reply #25 on: April 04, 2010, 02:16:52 AM »
Well, first thing is that living in a state does not make a person knowledgable about a district’s taser policy or policy regarding children misbehaving.  I have lived in this city for a couple of decades and I wouldn’t know the first thing regarding their taser policy or their restraint policy.  From the sound of the interview of the chief, there is a lot of ambiguity on their policy in regard to children.  That they haven’t outright suspended them means that they have some legal ground regarding the policy and the city doesn’t have enough to take serious action yet.  More than likely that is why people are waiting so anxiously for the video.

The main argument I see here is regarding the size of the police officers and that they should be able to wrestle him to the ground.  Their ability to tackle and subdue a ten year old is not a factor here.  For the police their main factor is to subdue the individual with the least amount of harm being done to the person.  If the police felt that by physically attacking and forcing the ten year old to comply they would do more damage than by using the taser, then the choice becomes more logical and understood.  Having 100 or 200 or 300lbs on someone does not mean that the fight to subdue them is any easier or potentially less harmful.  In fact the difference is size is probably worse for ensuring a good outcome.

That there was a physical altercation, such as slapping the child, points to an effort to restrain the child physically.  I don’t think the officer just walked up and slapped the child.  They also brought him to the floor at some point.  From the statements there was some form of physical force applied to the child in order to make him comply, but it did not work.  I could see how the officers then concluded or perhaps simply made a quick decision that a taser would be in everyone’s best interest to resolve the situation.  Were they have to continued wrestling with the child and caused injury, the entire department would be sued and they would be suspended anyway.  The child may have been seriously injured or killed in the struggle and nobody would be happy. 

After alleviating the shock and awe of the notion of a non-lethal weapon being used on a child, I don’t think the officers should be crucified for doing so.  At the most they should have to attend some sort of child behavior class or class on restraint.  The department should review its policy and write new ones for use with a child.