Doesn't Like Tasers

RECEIVED Thu., May 5, 2005

Dear Editor,
    When the city okayed the $75,000-plus purchase of 90 new Taser guns, an hourglass was tipped. APD's amplified access to the 50,000-volt stun gun weaponry certainly escalates chances that Austin might host the latest Taser-related death. Amnesty International has documented 103 such fatal incidents since June 2001 alone. So why did the tiny arsenal not even merit discussion from our City Council? What will it take for these life-threatening shock devices to become relevant to the individuals entrusted to protect the well-being of our community?
    If 95% of Austin police follow the standard mode of operation, is that enough? Or is the standard mode of operation even enough?
    Clearly, all eyes are now on APD Chief Stan Knee, his officers, and their brand-new weapons. While engaged in their noble mission to protect and serve, will our city's police force instead be the next to electrocute somebody's loved one to death?
Jordan Buckley
Immokalee, Fla.
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