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Do Tasers Always Work ?

Before Tasers, the police used other tactics on unruly folks. Choke holds and police dogs come to mind. I’m sure the “Don’t tase me, bro” guy would have been choked in the days before Tasers. Sure, a few folks were killed, so the two techniques may be tactically comparable. The Taser’s clear advantages of officer safety, speed, and stand-back range are probably the reason we don’t see offenders choked on camera often.

Tasers subject their victims to a 50,000 volt shock followed by 100 microsecond pulses of 1,200 volts.  Since 2001, more than 500 people in the United States have died after law enforcement officers used this weapon against them. A study published this week by the American Heart Association’s Circulation Journal confirms that the misuse of a Taser can cause sudden cardiac arrest and death.

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Tasers are a great tool if they are used under appropriate circumstances and if they are deployed properly. But, while they are the best device of their kind, they are a very big gamble. I think a 50-60% success rate is all you can expect.

Tasers are best known for their ability to incapacitate individuals while used in “probe mode,” when they fire two barbs that deliver an electric current along wires, causing the muscles to lock up. When placed against a person’s body in “drive stun” mode, as happened in the Ajibade case, Tasers do not incapacitate but cause localized pain that can be used to control dangerous individuals.

Tasers are not meant to kill people and do not emit a high enough voltage for lethal electrocution. However, there are circumstances where a Taser can result in death. Typically this occurs if someone has a heart condition.

Tasers are frequently used by the military and police officers as a nonlethal form of defense.  They are more expensive than the generic stun gun requiring replacement cartridges. Since police are trained to handle dangerous people, police-grade Tasers typically emit voltage for five seconds. This gives them time to get the suspect under control. Civilian tasers emit voltage for 30 seconds, which gives you time to get yourself away from the person. Generally, a police Taser can be shot up to 30 feet away from the suspect, whereas a civilian Taser can be shot up to 15 feet from the person. Police-grade Tasers can also have more probes, be more powerful, and have a quicker speed in regard to the probes firing.

Tasers work on the same frequency as the signals between brain and muscles, essentially hijacking them and rendering the target immobile for quite a while afterwards. It forces all muscles to contract repeatedly and quickly, stopping them dead. As in physically UNABLE to move. A stungun, on the other hand, is simply a painful electric charge that hurts, but has none of the above effects.

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This New Taser Pulse is a high-tech, subcompact weapon with an intuitive concealed carry design that packs the same knock-down punch used by law enforcement around the world. With the TASER Pulse you can reach an attacker from up to 15 feet away and immobilize them for 30 seconds giving you time to make a safe escape.

Subcompact design with intuitive user interface: The small size and pistol shape provides a familiar discreet carry capability. Shaved safeties and angled iron sights: For a comfortable conceal carry and prevention of snagging when withdrawing or re-holstering device Advanced target acquisition: LASER assisted targeting, color contrasting iron sights, and powerful LED flashlight to help identify friend or foe.

User replaceable battery: Battery lasts for approximately 50 30-second firings and it features an illuminated battery status indicator light. Tactile trigger and safety 15-foot safety range with back-up stun gun: Immobilize attackers at a safe distance.

Safe Escape Product Replacement Program: If the TASER Pulse is used for self-defense and it is left at the scene, TASER will replace the device free of charge.

Tasers, also known as stun guns, can cause sudden cardiac arrest and death, researchers from Indiana University School of Medicine reported in the journal Circulation . The author explained that applying an electric shock with an electronic control device to the chest can be deadly. Sudden cardiac arrest is when the heart suddenly, unexpectedly stops beating; the patient stops breathing and loses consciousness.

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Taser Pulse Black w/Laser

But Tasers do offer an alternative to the deadly use of force, meaning a police officer may not have to discharge his sidearm when confronting a suspect. Chicago police encounter people using illegal drugs, drunks and individuals who are mentally ill on a regular basis. They may not heed calls to stop, put their hands in the air and lay down on the ground. That’s apparently what happened with McDonald, who kept on walking with a folding knife at his side as he was surrounded by police, including some who had drawn their guns.

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Updated: May 7, 2022 — 1:46 pm

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