A popular police weapon comes under attack at the state capitol from people who want a moratorium on its use. In generic terms they are conducted energy devices. We know them by the brand name of a company that makes them–TASERS.
The legislature is being asked to set up a task force to study their use, the training of officers who use them, and other effects of the use of these devices.
One of the outspoken leaders of the movement is Moberly resident Athena Bachtel (bayk-tul), who says her son was murdered by police officers who "tased" him for 31 seconds, until he was unconscious and not breathing.
She says a medical examiner has ruled her son’s death a homicide. But she says no prosecutor has filed any charges.
Critics say the weapons are not non-lethal weapons, as some officers are led to believe. One witness at a senate hearing says the TASER company requires departments that train officers by shocking them with a TASER to sign a release of liability for the company. He says that should be a clue about the dangers of TASERS. .
It’s too late to pass this bill this year, probably. But House and Senate leaders could set up a task force or interim committee without legislation requiring
(You can listen to the Seante committee meeting by clickong on the link below)