A report by Head of Commission for Public Complaints Against the RCMP, Paul Kennedy, on the use of taser guns by the force has noted that the use of the weapons has increased over the last six years to include situations where people were “clearly non-combative”. Kennedy states that “Use [of taser guns] has expanded to include subduing resistant subjects who do not pose a threat of grievous bodily harm or death and on whom the use of lethal force would not be an option”.
The report recommends that the taser guns be reclassified from “intermediate tool” to “impact weapon”, meaning the weapon should only be used by officers when there is a clear threat of death or moral injury to officers or the public. In addition to restricting the use of tasers the report also calls for more monitoring of the weapon’s use and further research into the effects of the stun gun on the human body and the risks of inducing the condition that Dziekanski is thought to have died from, called excited delirium.
Hopefully the government will act quickly on the recommendations of this report so that we can avoid further tragedy.
Link to Report:
The commission's Taser report to Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day
RCMP must curb Taser use, watchdog says