Saturday, November 18, 2006

UCLA Taser Incident

This taser incident disgusts me. Here are some videos of the incident.

To form an opinion on whether the officers used excessive force, here's what I have been considering:

  • The fact that the man was a student, although true, is irrelevant; the officers did not know this at the time.
  • In the videos, the man yells and curses at police officers and refuses to comply when asked to stand up. However, he is not violent or billigerent, nor does he encourage the crowd towards violence as police claimed.
  • In the videos, students ask the police officers for badge numbers or other information. The police mostly ignored these requests, although at least one officer responded by telling a student that he/she would be tasered, too.
  • To me, the man's foreign name and possibly foreign nationality are irrelevant.

I couldn't find the legal requisites for the user of a taser on a suspect, but I have heard that they are similar to, though clearly more relaxed than, those of deadly force (suspect must be a danger to officers or others, etc...). So, what disturbs me is the fact that the suspect was repeatedly tasered while still in handcuffs.

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