By Meaghan Olson
Once praised as a non-lethal alternative to firearms, Tasers have faced heightened scrutiny as more and more Americans suffer serious injuries at the hands of these controversial weapons.
Even some major manufacturers of the electric weapons, admit that these products may cause "potentially fatal health risks".
If you’ve suffered a Taser injury, you may be able to file a personal injury lawsuit. Fill out the form below to get a free, no-obligation consultation with a local injury lawyer.
The Risks of Taser Use
Tasers typically shoot two dart-like electrodes into a victim's skin. Those darts send electric shocks through the body. At high enough voltage levels, these shocks can cause serious injuries, including a heart attack or brain injury.
In fact, the notion that these weapons are harmless has come into question following a series of Taser lawsuits and studies. A recent study by Amnesty International revealed that Tasers may have caused more than 200 deaths in the United States in a six-year span.
In a partial admission of the fatal nature of its electric weapons, Taser International has admitted in its training bulletin that Tasers may:
- Impair breathing or respiration
- Put the victim into a frenetic state called "excited delirium"
- Cause significant and potentially fatal health risks
The term “excited delirium” may sound like an almost pleasant experience, but this state has been cited in dozens of cases as a direct cause of death. It’s a strange euphemism for a sensation with potentially fatal consequences.
Some studies have also revealed that Taser shots are more dangerous the closer they are to the victim’s heart. As a result, Taser International has also warned police to shoot victims below their chest to minimize the risk of fatal heart attacks.
Legal Remedies for a Taser Injury
Taser International claims its weapons are intended "to incapacitate dangerous, combative, or high-risk subjects" who pose serious threats to police officers or innocent bystanders.
Amnesty International, however, estimates that roughly 80 percent of Taser victims are unarmed at the time they are attacked. Most of these unarmed victims likely fell below the threshold of "high risk subjects."
As a result, if you have suffered a Taser injury from aggressive police actions, you may be able to take action against the offending police officers and department. To seek justice, you may consider pursuing a personal injury lawsuit for a police brutality.A successful case may result in compensation for your injuries, damages and losses.
Police brutality cases may be difficult to win, but a local injury lawyer may help you pursue a personal injury settlement, particularly if your Taser injury was caused by unreasonable police behavior.
To learn more about your legal options after a Taser-related injury, speak with a local injury lawyer today.