About 50 Louisville area police officers completed training in the use of Tasers, weapons that deliver what their manufacturer says is a nonlethal shock. The department expects to have Tasers delivered this fall, reports the Louisville Courier-Journal. The officers shot Tasers as instructors tried to distract them, simulating the stress of a real-life situation with a suspect. “Taser, Taser. Get down on the ground,” shouted a sheriff’s deputy as he pulled the Taser’s trigger.
The training comes after the New York Times reported that at least 50 people around the nation had died since 2001, including six last month, after being shocked with a Taser. The Times said that all but one of the six were shocked with an M26 model, the forerunner of the X26 model that Louisville police will get. Arizona-based Taser International denies that any deaths are directly attributable to Taser use, said spokesman Mike Coplen. “We strongly stand behind our medical safety,” he said.