What we do not know about police use of Tasers (TM)
Abbreviated Journal Title
Policing-An Int J Police Strategies & Manag.
police; weapons; policing; Criminology & Penology
Purpose - The purpose of this paper is to review the police literature, select agency reports, and media publications to examine issues involving police use of Tasers(TM) Design/methodology/approach - The focus of inquiry is on questions of policy development, deployment, training, use and impact of Tasers; from organizational and community perspectives. Findings - Limited research reflects a lack of consensus in the development and application of policies related to Taser training and use. Variations in policy and training and the substitution of Tasers for other technologies across the use-of-force continuum result in operational inconsistency. This inconsistency makes it difficult to compare police departments in terms of the impact of Tasers on improved officer and citizen safety and reductions in the use of lethal force. This inconsistency is also reflected in media reports and has the potential to jeopardize community relations. Key policy issues center on length and content of training, training staff qualifications, and substitutions on the use-of-force continuum. Further study of Taser policy development, implementation, and evaluation is necessary to build a substantial and reliable body of knowledge to inform safe and effective police policy. Additional research is needed to evaluate the organizational and community implications of Taser implementation. Practical implications - Evidence-based Taser policy development is necessary to maintain the integrity of the technology, protect officer and citizen safety, and encourage the use of less-than-lethal force. Originality/value - This paper calls attention to the dearth of research on Taser use in policing, while discussing the challenge of implementing new weapon technologies into the police arsenal and the need for careful consideration of use-of-force substitution practices.
Policing-an International Journal of Police Strategies & Management
"What we do not know about police use of Tasers (TM)" (2007). Faculty Bibliography 2000s. 6797.