Cops Taser 14-Year-Old Who Wouldn't Drop Game Boy
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Cops Taser 14-Year-Old Who Wouldn't Drop Game Boy

Detroit Free Press | November 21 2004

Police in Lincoln Park had to use a Taser gun -- twice -- to subdue a kicking and screaming 14-year-old boy who wouldn't stop playing his Nintendo Game Boy during class.

The boy, who appeared in juvenile court Friday on a charge of resisting and obstructing a police officer, was uninjured, except for a scrape on his right temple that happened Thursday during the lengthy tussle with three police officers and the assistant principal at Lincoln Park High School.

According to a report filed in Wayne County Family Court by Lincoln Park Police Sgt. Charles Kaminski of the youth bureau, the boy was sent to the assistant principal's office because he refused to stop playing his Game Boy when the teacher told him to stop.

Once in the office, the boy refused to surrender the Game Boy to assistant principal Larry Phillips, who promised to return it to him after school.

When the boy continued to refuse to hand over the electronic game, school liaison Officer Paul Cochran was called. Cochran started to conduct a pat-down search of the boy and he started swinging fists and kicking at the officer, the police report said.

Cochran called for backup while he attempted to restrain the boy and Phillips held the boy's legs. Cochran said he received scrapes and bites on his arms trying to subdue the boy.

When two uniformed officers arrived, the boy was still fighting and one of the officers pulled out a Taser gun and attached the weapon to the boy's clothing. The gun's electric current, which officials said is nonlethal, is designed so suspects lose control of their muscles.

Being tased "stopped him for a moment and then he started fighting again," the police report said.

The officer warned the boy again to stop fighting and to give up the Game Boy. The boy said no, resumed fighting and was stung again by the Taser gun.

The three officers finally subdued the boy and he was admitted to the Wayne County Juvenile Detention Facility. Other than Cochran's bites, scratches and scrapes, the officers were not seriously injured.

At a court hearing Friday, the boy's mother told Family Court Referee David Perkins that her son had been in counseling since the fourth grade after he was illegally kidnapped by his stepmother and kept away from his mother for a year.

His counselor recently told the mother that her son was getting worse, she said. Perkins set bond at $2,000 pending a Dec.6 pre-trial hearing.


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