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Taser Trial Update #4 - 4 December 2006

Taser Trial Update #4 - 4 December 2006

5 December 2006

In the period since the trial began on 1 September 2006 to 4 December 2006 there have been a total of 33 incidents involving the taser. Since the last update - 17 October 06 - there have been seventeen incidents where the taser has been involved.

Tuesday 23 October - Police were called to an address in Auckland in response to an alleged breach of a protection order. The offender was known to police. On arrival at the address the offender was about to leave in his vehicle. On being asked to get out of the vehicle the offender indicated police should chase him and closed the door. An officer opened the car door at which point the offender reached towards the floor of the vehicle where a screwdriver was lying. The officer immediately drew the taser and laser painted him, warning him to leave the screwdriver where it was and to get out of the vehicle. The offender complied.

Sunday 29 October - Police were advised that a male armed with a spade chased two other males down a driveway in Lower Hutt. He had then smashed a vehicle parked at the address and picked up a concrete block which he used to assault one of the males he had pursued.

The offender was found on a neighbouring property lying on his back. The taser was de-holstered but not presented and the offender was informed of this. The offender was non compliant but was not actively resisting Police so the Taser was not required. Assisting officers moved in, handcuffed the offender and removed him from the scene.

Sunday 29 October 06 - Police received information that an offender, a member of a motorcycle gang, who was wanted for wounding with intent, was at a bar in Papatoetoe.

This person had attacked his victim with a Stanley (box-cutter) knife and caused him grievous injury. The offender was aware that Police were looking for him and had been actively evading arrest.

The shift supervisor determined that the offender would take advantage of any opportunity to escape arrest and considered that given his recent history, it was likely he would be armed with some weapon, possibly a knife.

Attending officers entered the bar through the front door and immediately sighted the offender walked out from a back room. An officer presented the Taser and used the laser-painting tactic while advising the offender to place his hands behind his back. The offender was complaint.

A search of the offenders vehicle revealed a bag of cannabis, a pipe for smoking methamphetamine and a loaded and cocked 9mm Lugar pistol (beside the driver's seat).

The offender was arrested and charged with wounding with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, kidnapping, unlawful possession of a pistol and possession of cannabis for supply.

Monday 6 November - A woman was being held against her will by her son at an address in Wellington. The son was holding a knife to her throat and would not let her go free unless she acceded to his demands. Officers entered the address and the taser was presented at the offender who complied with Police instructions.

Saturday 11 November - Police were called to an address in Wellington where the subject was well known to police. He was known to be violent, aggressive, take "p" and had threatened to commit suicide on several occasions. The officer armed with the Taser in considering the subject and the situation made a perceived cumulative assessment that a response from the subject would be likely to be in the assaultive range. He prepared force and de-holstered the taser on entering the house. The person had left the address.

Tuesday 14 November - Police were called back the same address in Wellington in relation to similar reports of concern relating to the resident... It was alleged that the subject was again threatening to commit suicide.

On arrival Police were told by the subject to "f... off" and that if they wanted to come inside the address a warrant was needed. The officers then heard a sound similar to that of a firearm being cocked. While tactically withdrawing from the address the officer armed with the taser de-holstered as a precautionary measure. The Armed Offenders Squad (AOS) were called... The AOS appealed to the subject to come out of the house, which he eventually did. He was aggressive, agitated and very irrational.

Sunday 12 November - Police received several calls from concerned neighbours of a Porirua house reporting a domestic incident. Police had been advised that a male in the house was in possession of a baseball bat. On arrival police heard the sound of smashing glass and then shortly after a male came out of the front door. An officer issued a request for the man to stay where he was. He was aggressive and continued to approach the officer who then warned the man that he was being laser painted, and told the man to comply with his requests.

The male continued towards the officer who discharged the taser. A second officer moved forward to handcuff the man. The effects of the five-second taser stopped and the man struggled to get free. He was told to remain still but continued to struggle. At this point a second male, also in an agitated and aggressive state, entered the property. The officer, with the taser, managed to prevent the second man from becoming involved, enabling the offender to be handcuffed.

Monday 13 November - Police were called to a domestic incident in Wellington where the man was abusive and aggressive. The man was known to police and had previously threatened to commit suicide and kill police. The incident was deemed to be potentially dangerous for staff. Those responding were armed with firearms and were wearing body armour. A dog was also in attendance. In line with perceived cumulative risk assessment he taser was de-holstered. The address was cleared and police were directed to a nearby address where the offender was located. He was compliant with police instructions.

Wednesday 15 November - During an AOS operation in South Auckland to take in an offender wanted for three aggravated robberies, an officer attended with a taser. It was necessary for this officer (unaccompanied) to escort the offender for some distance down the street. The taser was de-holstered the taser as a precaution should the offender attempt to take flight.. It was not required.

Friday 17 November - Police were advised of a domestic dispute taking place in a street in South Auckland. The information provided to police was that the male was holding an axe and a small knife. Officers responding discussed the tactics to be deployed which included OC spray and a taser. On arrival at the location police were told the two people involved had walked off to a nearby address. They were advised that the male was still in possession of the axe and the knife.

Officers approached the house with the taser de-holstered. Yelling was heard coming from the house. On gaining entry police found three people in the house, two of whom were the couple seen arguing on the street previously and the third turned out to be the mother of the man. She was seen giving the man a "talking to". The mother subsequently told police she had taken the axe and knife away from the man and hidden them. These were recovered and the man admitted to earlier holding the axe.

None of the people involved were aware of the presence of the taser.

Monday 20 November - A man called Police stating he wanted police to come to his house so he could cut their throats. Police found a man in a North Shore house in an extremely agitated state in possession of a knife. He was asked numerous times to disarm and leave the property. He became more and more agitated and aggressive. The man became fixated on an officer issued with a Glock firearm stationed by the garage. The man threatened to rush out of the house and presented the knife towards the officer.

On gaining entry through the front door to the house, police were confronted by the man holding a knife who was rushing forward to shut the door. The glass in the door was smashed and the offender continued to presenting the knife at Police. The taser was discharged on two occasions, eventually incapacitating the man for sufficient time to enable the officers to handcuff him.

Sunday 26 November - A man brandishing a machete approached a West Auckland house. On being told he had the wrong address he went next door. Police had been briefed to approach the address with caution and attempt communications with the person. After cordoning the house police knocked on the door and were confronted by an agitated and obstructive man. One of the officers sighted a knife in the man's pocket. He was told immediately to come out of the house with his hands in the air. He stepped back into the house. The taser was presented and he was told to step onto the footpath. He was handcuffed and charged with possession of an offensive weapon.

Sunday 26 November - Police were called to an address in Wainuiomata where they spoke to several occupants in relation to a disturbance. The offender was initially co-operative. However, when police approached his daughter to speak with her the man grabbed her and shut the two of them into a room in the house. Police withdrew from the house and waited for support which had been called... During this time, the offender came out of the house in a "hyped up" and very aggressive manner. He was advised that he was under arrest for assault. The offender refused to comply with the request to turn around and place his hands behind his back. The taser was drawn and the man was warned and laser painted. The man initially continued to refuse police requests. Eventually after further communication, other tactical options were used to affect the arrest. The man was charged with assault with intent to injure.

Thursday 30 November 06 - A woman in Hillsborough, Auckland, was being chased along a driveway by her husband with a butcher's knife. On arrival at the address Police asked him to come outside. When the man opened the front door to the property the taser was presented and he was laser painted.. The man eventually responded, was handcuffed and searched. The knife was located in the house with a "p" pipe and a cannabis pipe. He was arrested with possession of an offensive weapon, threatening behaviour and possession of a pipe.

Thursday 30 November 06 - Police received information that a man at a Henderson address was in possession of an axe, was threatening his partner and smashing property. As police were speaking to the female a man identified as the person concerned appeared at an open door. The taser was drawn, presented, and the male directed to put his hands in the air. He acknowledged the direction and raised his hands. The man was handcuffed. The log-splitting axe was found on the ground just outside the doorway. The man was charged with possession of an offensive weapon, assault with a weapon, willful damage and threatening behaviour.

Friday 1 December 06 - Police were informed that a man had been threatened with a pistol at a Orewa address. Further reports indicated the offender had access to an air rifle and a stun gun. After issuing firearms and fire orders, police moved in convoy to the street where they met three vehicles attempting to leave. The vehicles were secured. A man was seen leaving the vehicles, moving towards the address. He was asked to stop and surrender to police. He spoke to Police and continued walking. The man was warned he would be pepper sprayed. This he ignored. He was sprayed and taken to the ground. The man struggled to his feet refusing to comply. The taser was presented and the man was laser painted. The man was told the police had a taser and that it would be deployed if he did not desist. He was sprayed again, stopped and he was taken into custody. No further deployment of the taser was required. The man was identified as a relative of the man being sought was located a shor! t time later.

Saturday 2 December 06 - Police were informed that there was a man outside a dairy in Te Atatu with a machete or knife. Police located the man in a neighbouring property and pursued him on foot. The man reached into his pocket and was immediately warned that police had a taser. The man pulled a 20 cm knife blade from his pocket and threw it across a lawn and stopped running. A second offender appeared at the doorway of the property. Police were unable to get a clear, full view of the man. The second man was laser painted and directed to put his hands in the air and move away from the doorway. The man complied and was handcuffed. In the doorway where the man had been standing was a 30 cm kitchen knife.

ENDS


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