Updated: Tuesday, 15th October 2019 @ 9:55am

Taser guns are safer than batons, claims Greater Manchester Police’s Chief Constable

Taser guns are safer than batons, claims Greater Manchester Police’s Chief Constable

By James Haviland

Tasor guns are safer than batons, according to Greater Manchester Police’s Chief Constable in an online Twitter webchat this week.

Recent allegations of Manchester police using a Taser on a 16-year-old boy after locking his mother out of her home have raised questions over the use of Tasers.

There have also been questions nationwide about police’s alleged overzealous use of Tasers in various cases.

MM asked Chief Constable Peter Fahy in the webchat: “What training do Manchester police officers have to go through to use Tasers?

“I assume you will be unable to comment on the article in the MEN where police tasered a 16 yr old who locked his mum out of the house, but I recently read an article that said that the officer who tasered Raoul Moat had never used a Taser before.

“Will they become a more common sight and if so do you welcome this?”

Chief Constable Fahy answered: “We train our officers to a very high level to use Taser and they have to pass the course to get one.

“I am not going to comment on the recent case but the general point is that we take this very seriously and a Taser overall is much safer than hitting someone with a baton.”

The belief that a Taser is safe is open to debate, they have been linked with cardiac arrhythmia, there have been four Taser related deaths in the UK and over 300 reported worldwide.

In a 2008 report Amnesty international stated: “Tasers and similar conducted energy weapons are inherently open to abuse as they are easy to carry and easy to use and they can inflict severe pain at the push of a button without leaving substantial marks.

“The capacity to use such weapons close up as ‘touch stun’ guns, often when individuals are already in custody, and to inflict repeated or prolonged shocks, makes them even more prone to abuse.”

For a full transcript of the interview visit: http://www.gmp.police.uk/