Audio and Images: 'Political Environment' Stalls Taser's Rollout
Delegates at the Police Association's conference were told yesterday that by Superintendent Tony McLeod there was 'no option but to withdraw the Taser for the period of the evaluation' after the initial trial period had finished.
The Police Association are strong supporters of the Taser being rolled out to frontline officers as soon as possible. Superintendent Mcleod acknowledged there had been some "angst" among Police Association members at the Taser being withdrawn.
Superintendent Mcleod however explained that there was a clear need to take the Taser's back off the streets given the 'political environment' the Police were acting in.
The Maori Party have complained to the Human Rights Commissioner alleging that the Taser is specifically targeted at Maori communities. The taser's roll-out has also been staunchly opposed by the Green Party, Mental Health Commission and a group led by Lawyer Marie Dyhrberg, named the Campaign Against The Taser.
According to a Dominion Post report, the evaluation could be done and dusted in six weeks. The National party yesterday released its Police policy detailing strong support of the Taser and thus countered the negative political environment for the roll-out of the Taser.
Delagates at the Police Association's conference also heard from Porirua police constable Jocelyn Bell about exactly how the Taser is used by frontline staff.
Listen to Constable Bell explain how the Taser was used in a violent domestic incident
Listen to Superintendent Tony McLeod explain where issues surrounding the Taser's trial
Listen to Police Association President Greg O'Connor explain to Scoop the effect negative media coverage is having on the Police force in the wake of the Ruatoki raids