A university student was tasered during a student protest allegedly by UCLA security.
AP Photo/Danny Moloshok - http://laist.com/2009/11/20/ucla_is_no_stranger_to.php
A man died the week of April 13 2012, after being shocked by Edmonton, Alberta police with a Taser stun gun. According to the head of the Edmonton Police Association, the suspect became violent when officers were trying to get him ready for a bail hearing, destroying monitors and computers. The Taser was used after two officers were injured.
Tasers are used all over the world by police and military. While many advocate the use of what they believe to be a non-lethal answer to using guns, deaths are reported and have created controversy over the use of this technology.
Taser is actually a brand name and the company name that has popularized the technology. It’s an electric control device or electroshock weapon that uses electrical current to disrupt neuro-muscular transmission resulting in a loss of muscle control. The Taser does this by emitting a high-voltage, low amp electric shock from a small battery pack though two darts attached to long insulated wires. These darts are launched with forced air. The unit is compact and can be held easily in one hand.
Invented by NASA researcher Jack Cover during the 1960s and 1970s, his goal was to create a non-lethal weapon instead of using firearms to stop a suspect. He named the weapon after a childhood comic book hero named Tom Swift’s electric riffle called a Taser. Changes were made to the original designs of Cover, including removing the gunpowder charge to make the darts shoot out. Rick and Tom Smith bought the Taser from Cover and changed it to shoot with compressed air.
Tasers were first used by law enforcement in the United States in 1998. It was adopted in multiple countries such as Canada, Australia, UK, Brazil, France, Greece, Israel, New Zealand and Malaysia for use only by law enforcement agencies. Controversy from the beginning has...