Seeing an officer tased is unnerving

Published on Thursday, June 7, 2012

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Austin Decker pours casting material for a shoe impression during today's CSI: Camp at the Greer Police Department.

Courtesy Greer Police Department

Austin Decker pours casting material for a shoe impression during today's CSI: Camp at the Greer Police Department.



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Shelby Peek pours casting material for a shoe impression. Shelby and students at CSI: Camp learned how a minute impression can help identify a suspect in a crime.

Courtesy Greer Police Department

Shelby Peek pours casting material for a shoe impression. Shelby and students at CSI: Camp learned how a minute impression can help identify a suspect in a crime.



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Gabe Alexander smiles in the background as he watches cousin Jacob Alexander pour casting material for shoe impressions.

Courtesy Greer Police Department

Gabe Alexander smiles in the background as he watches cousin Jacob Alexander pour casting material for shoe impressions.

Being tased when resisting arrest is not unheard of; however, being tased in a conference room is incomprehensible to me.

I witnessed Officer Clay Anderson, a rookie with the Greer Police Department, receive 0.036 volts of energy today as he was tased in the mid-back area (video below). In comparison to the 120 volts you would receive from a wall outlet a taser seems like a walk in the park, at least that’s what I thought until I observed what I feel to be an outrage.

Being tased is a requirement if an officer plans on carrying a taser, an understandable process when thought about. The standard tasing lasts five seconds and is applied to overcome a person’s nervous system to complete the arrest without further struggle.

After viewing a graph, the scientific aspect was better understood as I realized the measure of electricity sent between the brain and electrodes in muscle tissue resulting in movement is the equivalent to the amount of electricity being emitted during a tasing, hence rendering the body motionless.

In saying this it’s clear most law enforcement officers don’t fire a weapon to harm, only to protect themselves and the public and quickly contain an individual before danger occurs.

A public safety officer is enpowered when assigned a weapon and, as we know, with power comes responsibility, so being aware of the strength contained in a taser is valuable. This not only educates the rookie being tased, it gives that person a sense of mercy and common sense it will not be used unnecessarily.

I agree that no public safety officer should advance without first obtaining the facts as to how their weapons work. But is this cruel act vital to understanding the implications of a taser? I understand the reasoning behind this requirement yet part of me cannot help feeling this is inhumane.

Watching Officer Anderson today and hearing his voice strained in pain, gazing at him while he winced as the taser probes impacted and fixed into his body, standing by helplessly while he was inflicted with bodily harm was difficult.

I am not acquainted with this gentleman and am aware that he was not forced into this decision. However, I disagree with the process.  One is not shot with a gun first before shooting one itself, so why engage in such a violent way of teaching about tasers? Someday the requirement may change but for now public safety officers will continue to exhibit dedication by being tased in hopes they learn about their weapon and responsibility.

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