Can the police tell the difference between frail pensioners and young men carrying samurai swords?

Andy speaks to London’s Biggest Conversation 97.3 about the recent tasering of a 62 year old registered blind man by a police officer in the search for a young man carrying a samurai sword. It is alleged that the officer mistook the man’s white stick for the sword.

Colin Farmer, after no warning, was stunned by an officer who was searching for a young man with a samurai sword, once on the ground was put on his front and handcuffed. People are now questioning how the officer could have possibly mistaken a blind man’s stick for a sword if not when he was behind him but once he had restrained him on the floor.

Andy Redhead from Sec Tech Ltd, gives his insight on the situation. He explains that tasers were brought into the police force on the premise that it gives officers an option of less than lethal action whilst awaiting the arrival of armed response, should they be needed. They can be used to bring violent, dangerous or life threatening situations to a safe conclusion. If used correctly, they can be a very useful tool in crime fighting for unarmed officers.

However, in this case the power was abused. Andy believes that in order to retain public confidence, when incidents like this arise they need to be dealt with in an honest and transparent manner. If a police officer falls short of their professional expectations, they should be honest and come clean. This has not been the case with the officer who tasered Mr Farmer.

As the interview drew to a conclusion, Andy added that being part of the police force is all about common sense, listening and communication and peaceful negotiation.