After decades languishing in the trunks of squad cars, the Taser is getting a chance at a higher profile in the New York Police Department, says the New York Times. The Taser's limited career in New York has contrasted with its ubiquity around the nation, as police officials from Wisconsin to California have praised its usefulness, particularly in encounters with the emotionally disturbed. The weapon has not been fully embraced in the nation's largest police force, partly because of the difficulties in maintaining the devices and in training officers. Tasers also have had a troubled history in New York City. An early model was at the center of a scandal in the early 1980s when it was used to force drug suspects to confess. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, then a deputy inspector, was assigned to clean up the mess.
The Taser model being used in New York is the M26, which is not the newest version (that is the X26, which is 60 percent lighter and smaller). The M26 is yellow, looks like a 9-millimeter Glock, weighs about 16 ounces and costs about $400.