Taser Bullets?

(11 am. – promoted by ek hornbeck)

Taser Bullets? That is the report.

Called the nanosecond electrical pulse (nsEP) project, the research focuses on using brief electrical pulses to temporarily paralyze an individual by disrupting the nervous system, similar to the way the Taser, another popular nonlethal device, works. But where this project differs from most other stun guns, according to the Pentagon, is that it could theoretically be built as a wireless system, and have a longer lasting effect.

In the next paragraph, it goes on to state how this research may be able to be shrunk into bullet form.

The Pentagon’s Joint Nonlethal Weapons Directorate, which is sponsoring the work, declined a request for an interview, but answered written questions. “It is hoped the technology can be made small enough to fit in a small, self-contained round,” Dave Law, the chief of the office’s technology division, wrote of the research project. “The round would have a power source and therefore would not need wires.”

I’ll tell you why this is a bad idea.

1) The purpose of the technology; a NONLETHAL means of disabling a person.

We have that already, and, it has yet to be proven to be non-lethal. In fact, do a simple google search of “death taser” and there are pages of incidents where death occurred from its use. As lethal as the current taswer has proven to be, those involved in this new technology state that it can incapacitate a person longer.

But where this project differs from most other stun guns, according to the Pentagon, is that it could theoretically be built as a wireless system, and have a longer lasting effect.

That means it is even more powerful than the current taser. Thus, we can expect even more deaths to result solely from the electrical shock.

2) Deployment of the round

Let’s say, for the sake of argument, that this technology is miniaturized to the point it can be fired from a gun or shotgun. An officer can only use one type of round at a time. This is then predicating that only non-lethal rounds will eventually be used. That sounds great, doesn’t it? However, imagine just how fast law enforcement will be to pull their gun and shoot with this round, which leads us to the next reason.

3) Teaching to shoot

Law enforcement has always been taught to identify a threat before they are allowed to shoot a person (ie, suspect). With “non-lethal” rounds, the mentality will turn to “shoot first, ask later”. We’ve already seen it with the taser where officers use it first instead of last.

If you don’t consider these reasons, than consider that in the Supreme Court ruling in Tennessee v. Garner, we still had an ability to be outraged over senseless death and judicial courage to put restraint on the actions of law enforcement. Whether you die from being shot or from the use of a taser, dead is dead. Yet, there has been no judicial courage limiting the use of a taser. In fact, just the opposite has occurred. The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled against a woman who was pregnant when she was tasered during a traffic stop.

Brooks was driving her son to school when she was stopped for speeding in a school zone, according to the facts recited in the opinion (PDF). She refused to sign the ticket because she thought it was an admission of guilt. Officers threatened to use the Taser unless Brooks got out of the car, but she refused.

According to Berzon’s dissent, “Brooks had no weapons and had not harmed or threatened to harm a soul.” She warned officers she was seven months’ pregnant, but they used the Taser on her anyway, “causing her to scream with pain and leaving burn marks and permanent scars.”

In fact, they used the taser on her three times. A second article states:

But in a 2-1 ruling Friday, a panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals disagreed. Judges Cynthia Holcomb Hall and Diarmuid F. O’Scannlain held that the officers were justified in making an arrest because Brooks was obstructing them and resisting arrest.

The use of force was also justified because of the threat Brooks posed, Hall wrote: “It seems clear that Brooks was not going to be able to harm anyone with her car at a moment’s notice. Nonetheless, some threat she might retrieve the keys and drive off erratically remained, particularly given her refusal to leave the car and her state of agitation.”

They also noted that the force used wasn’t that serious because the Taser was in “touch” mode rather than “dart” mode, which hurts more. They reversed the lower court’s opinion and held that the officers were entitled to immunity from the lawsuit.

The officers’ lawyers, Ted Buck and Karen Cobb, said the officers made the right decision under the circumstances they faced.

“Police officers have to have the ability to compel people to obey their lawful orders,” Buck said. That’s all the court recognized today. The 9th Circuit just applied the law instead of getting caught up in the otherwise unfortunate factual circumstances.”

Now, imagine if the Supreme Court, in Tennessee v. Garner, had simply “applied the law” instead of considering the actual circumstances of the incident.


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  1. the insistence on compliance…..

    and on the surface this seems acceptable…..

    yet it is troubling when you face a police state…..

    the assertion that all non lethal means are acceptable in order to force compliance seems to allow for the use of nearly any means desired……

    where does this stop…..

    if done properly water boarding is non lethal will it become acceptable…..

    for many on the right it already is acceptable….

    when do we enter the territory of 1984…..

  2. is worth a Wiki read:

    Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1 (1985)[1], was a case in which the Supreme Court of the United States held that under the Fourth Amendment, when a law enforcement officer is pursuing a fleeing suspect, he or she may use deadly force only to prevent escape if the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.

    Mr. Garner was shot by Memphis Police while trying to climb over a fence to escape from an alleged burglary.  He was shot in the head.  He died.  A Tennessee statute at the time said it was ok to kill a fleeing felon.  It did not require an analysis of whether there was a threat of death to the officer or anybody else.    

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