Gregory B. Hladky
May 12, 2011
A Waterbury man died earlier this month after being hit with a police stun gun. In Middletown, a state investigation recently exonerated police in the May 2010 death of a man who died following 34 shocks by a Taser weapon.
State lawmakers had been considering legislation to require standardized police training in the use of stun guns and restrictions on when and how they should be used. Opposed by the Connecticut Chiefs of Police Association (pdf), the bill has been watered down to a study of police use of Tasers by a state law enforcement training panel. The study legislation is awaiting General Assembly action.
“We were disappointed,” David McGuire, a lawyer with the Connecticut chapter of the American Civil Liberties Union, says of the much weakened legislation. “But this is a step in the right direction, and we believe a study will show the need for comprehensive Taser regulation, including training and public accountability.”