May 12, 2008

The number of incidents in which police used Tasers has increased as more officers get the authority to use them, the Home Office says.

The stun weapons were used by officers in England and Wales 252 times between September 2007 and February 2008 – 236 in the last three of those months.

Of these, the 50,000-volt weapons were discharged by officers 31 times.

In other cases drawing or aiming the Taser had a deterrent effect, says the government.

Ten police forces have been taking part in a 12-month trial, where Tasers have been used by specially-trained units, who are not firearms officers.

“Tasers have contributed to resolving incidents without injury where otherwise there would have been a real possibility of someone being seriously injured or killed,” said Home Office minister Tony McNulty.

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