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Tasers And Drugged Up Perps Don't Mix

Like that should come as some sort of surprise, but still people keep unexpectedly dieing after getting 10+ Taser shocks in short order. The latest..

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - The autopsy report of a man repeatedly stunned by police officers using Tasers labeled the man's cause of death as "excited delirium" and not the direct result of the shocks.

State medical examiner Dr. Bruce Levy said in a statement released Friday that Patrick Lee's manner of death could not be determined.

The 21-year-old died Sept. 24 at Vanderbilt University Medical Center after being shocked up to 19 times two days earlier by police.

"There is no evidence that any of the restraint techniques used that night, including the Taser, directly caused Mr. Lee's cardiac arrest and death," Levy said. "The combined effects of multiple applications of the Taser, pepper spray and physical force on someone in excited delirium are unclear and require additional research."

It's pretty clear that the effects of all that non-lethal firepower aren't designed to be "good" for you either...

From eyewitness accounts of the encounter Lee was said to be "out of it," and was definitely acting crazy (marijuana and LSD were found on his person and in his system) - running around naked in the parking lot of a nightclub tends to flag you as a nut case to police.

What's most odd about the coroner's statement is that Taser International has done the research. Unfortunately they don't think it's such a hot idea to repeatedly Taser persons showing symptoms of excited delirium.

The company that makes Taser Guns is under investigation, along with two Metro Police officers who used the tasers on a Nashville man who died after being hit with the devices. But the manufacturer of the guns said it send a warning that might have prevented the death of Patrick Lee.

...A bulletin sent from Taser International in June was forwarded to Metro officers who are certified to use the devices. The bulletin was in the form of an e-mail, and warned against prolonged, or extensive multiple discharges, especially when dealing with persons showing symptoms of excited delirium. These subjects are at significant and potentially fatal health risks for further prolonged exertion and/or impaired breathing.

It was not immediately known if the two officers who tasered Patrick Lee read that e-mail warning.

Clearly Lee placed himself in a position to be in confrontation with the police, and in his drugged up state he perhaps reacted to police efforts to restrain him in ways which required even more drastic response, but 19 shocks with the Taser (in a addition to batons and pepper spray) to subdue a 160 lb. man seems excessive.

Perhaps my perspective is distorted by too many viewings of Cops. They never seemed to have a problem taking down the crazy, shirtless guy (a Cops staple) with a little coordinated beat down. While they may have been battered and bruised, all those guys are still alive...

Comments (10)

I agree. Tasers are danger... (Below threshold)

I agree. Tasers are dangerous. The cops should stick to shooting people.

I was all set to get all sn... (Below threshold)
Jay Tea:

I was all set to get all snarky on this, but I can't think of a single thing to say that would even come close to Tom's. Nothing more need be said.


Yeah, Tom beat me to the pu... (Below threshold)

Yeah, Tom beat me to the punch too. Heh.

Wizbang, you're full of sh*... (Below threshold)

Wizbang, you're full of sh*t!

First you say 10+ shocks with a Taser, then you say 19 shocks with a Taser. Which is it?

For the record, according to the article (which you linked) I counted the Taser being applied 4 times, not 10 or 19 like you try to suggest. Why don't you stick to facts instead of hysteria?

Like Tom said, let's get rid of Tasers and just shoot them...

Wizbang, by reading your post, you're apparently very naive and you live a very sheltered life, so why don't you sit down and shut up and leave things like this to people who know what they're talking about.
You obviously don't.

Shooting them is much bette... (Below threshold)
Fred Z:

Shooting them is much better that Wizzer's suggestion for a "beat down". Absolutely for sure there will be someone there making a video of the beat down. It will look horrible and some more long suffering taxpayers will get to pay another perp $10M.

The first lesson law students get taught is that dead guys are worth much less than injured guys. "If ya run someone over, throw her in reverse and finish the job".

<a href="http://sobekpundit... (Below threshold)

The cops and Taser International are being sued in Las Vegas by the father of some kid who died (yes, he was on drugs when tased).

On wierd aspect of the case is that the ACLU is representing the dad. Sure, of course I expect to see them in on a police brutality case, but a products liability/wrongful death case?

You know, if I were really ... (Below threshold)
B Moe:

You know, if I were really the insensitive bastard alot of people seem to think I am, I would make a joke about a killer buzz here.

Is that Darwin guy right ev... (Below threshold)

Is that Darwin guy right every time or what?

No, unfortunately Darwin mi... (Below threshold)

No, unfortunately Darwin misses a few.

"thebronze," for one.... (Below threshold)

"thebronze," for one.






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