Thursday, November 22, 2007

Frickin' Robocop Taser Beams

"One death is a tragedy. A million is a statistic." - Josef Stalin

Another taser death.

This is ridiculous.

I've been watching Question Period in the House of Commons lately and I gotta agree with NDP leader Jack Layton continuing to call on Public Safety Minister Stockwell Day to order that the use of tasers be suspended until we learn more about them. None of these deaths were warranted or sanctioned.

With things like photo-radar, red light cameras, and street surveillance cameras, all of these things are inching toward "robocop enforcement", where more money is put into technology, which often doesn't work, and not into actual people doing the actual enforcement of the law, especially having more of them together. (The recent young Mountie's death in Nunavut a couple weeks ago was most tragic, especially with him being the only officer on the call.)

But now we see the frequent use of tasers to assist with enforcement, which time and time again, we have seen failing in the most reprehensible manner. The use of them should have stopped after the first death.

This is Canada for crying out loud.

Here's a recap of taser-related deaths:


  • (unreleased name), 45, in Nova Scotia Correctional Facility
  • Quilem Registre, 39, in Montreal.
  • Robert Dziekanski, 40, in the Vancouver Airport in October.
  • Claudio Castagnetta, 32, died in Quebec City on Sept. 20, two days after being tasered.


  • Jason Dean, 28, in Red Deer while running from police in August.


  • Alesandro Fiacco, 33, in Edmonton, arrested while wandering into traffic in December.
  • James Foldi, 39, of Beamsville, Ont., while being arrested for breaking and entering in July.
  • Paul Sheldon Saulnier, 42, while being restrained by police in Digby, N.S., in July.
  • Gurmeet Sandhu, 41, of Surrey B.C., while being restrained during a domestic dispute in June.
  • Kevin Geldart, 34, in Moncton, N.B., in an altercation with police.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Although I agree somewhat with your stance but I think a total out right ban is a move in a bad direction.

Tasers are a less lethal use of force as compared to guns. An unfortunate set of circumsatnces has occured and like anything the press has picked up on it and ran with it as their personal mission for the moment. And of course Mr. Layton has jumped on broad as his personal mission of the day.

I hope cooler heads prevail and a look into the use of tasers and in which circumstances tasers can be used and when they can not.

Shawn Dougan