Star Opinion: Concern over Taser figures

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They’re a weapon that can do serious damage when deployed.

But it would be very difficult to argue that our police officers shouldn’t be equipped with Tasers.

READ STORY: Police use tasers on dozens of people in South Yorkshire.

In our area South Yorkshire Police’s 85 firearms officers carry a Taser, plus 10 per cent of uniformed officers. Figures we reveal today say more than 60 people in South Yorkshire have been subdued and restrained with the police electro-shock weapons in little more than two years.

The youngest person to have been stunned was 19 – while the oldest was 62.

Each officer who carries a Taser receives a significant amount of training before being issued with one and an annual refresher course.

It is vital that the police are given the methods to protect themselves and the public if needs be.

One concern is that if weapons are provided then inevitably they will be used. Some may have no problem with Tasers being deployed on the public at the discretion of the police.

However, it would be wise to bear in mind that they should only be used in the most extreme of circumstances.

If a Taser is needed once a fortnight then what does that say about the behaviour of the people the police have to deal with every day.