USA: Shock Tactics: inside the Taser, the weapon that transformed policing


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Shock Tactics: inside the Taser, the weapon that transformed policing
18.12.17
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An in-depth investigative series from Reuters that looks at the introduction, use and effects of the "less-than-lethal" electroshock weapon, the taser, in the United States.

See: Inside the Taser, the weapon that transformed policing: Shock Tactics - a Reuters series (Reuters, link):

Part 1: The Toll: "Part 1: In the most detailed study ever of fatalities and litigation involving police use of stun guns, Reuters finds more than 150 autopsy reports citing Tasers as a cause or contributor to deaths across America. Behind the fatalities is a sobering reality: Many who die are among society’s vulnerable – unarmed, in psychological distress and seeking help."

Part 2: The Warnings: "Reuters, examining hundreds of wrongful death lawsuits, finds the public pays most of the liability bill as police describe difficulty keeping up with the manufacturer’s increasingly detailed safety alerts."

Part 3: The Experts: "Taser International has defended the safety of its stun guns by spending millions on studies and forging close ties with police, medical examiners and consultants. When someone dies after an altercation involving a Taser, the manufacturer is quick to offer guidance to investigators, Reuters found."

Part 4: The Science: "Taser International won over police by touting research it said was as rigorous as FDA-style testing. But its claims about its early studies - which began with a pig, five dogs and some willing cops - were overstated."

Part 5: The X26: "The X26, Taser’s most powerful stun gun, was removed from the sales lineup in 2014. Behind the phase-out, a truth: The popular weapon posed a higher cardiac risk than other models."

Part 6: The Prisoners: "Reuters documents 104 prisoner fatalities after corrections officers deployed Tasers, often with other force. Most inmates were unarmed, and many were handcuffed or pinned to the ground. Some abuses, experts say, are akin to torture."

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