TX Police Department Halts Taser Use, Others Review Policies, Over Maker’s Warnings


The police department in Mansfield, Tx., is no longer using Tasers, and several other North Texas cities are reviewing their policies regarding stun guns because of confusion over a manufacturer's warning about the lethal nature of the devices. reports the Ft. Worth Star-Telegram. Mansfield Police Chief Gary Fowler banned Tasers three weeks ago, saying he was uncomfortable with what he called heightened factory warnings that began accompanying Tasers and other electric stun guns this year.

Those same warnings, along with a memo from a local law firm that represents about 40 other North Texas cities, led five other cities to review their policies regarding stun guns, or conductive electrical weapons, or CEWs. “We still have all the other tools out there,” Fowler said. “But this one tool I believe it's in the best interest of the officers not to use any longer.” A spokesman from TASER Inc. said the warnings on how the product could cause injury or death are nothing new, that they were simply reposted on the company website in March. The same cautionary language has been included in training manuals since 2009, he said. “It was a miscommunication” said Steve Tuttle, a spokesman for TASER. He said the Internet led to “misinformation about how the warnings were new, when that was not the case.”

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