In Canada, there is an inquiry into the user of Tasers by the police. In testimony before the Braidwood inquiry, a police officer, Craig Baltzer, compared the impact of a Taser shock to “an extreme workout”:
“…Baltzer, who trains officers on the use of Tasers, said police are taught that multiple Taser shocks can be hazardous.
“It’s a situation to be aware of because you are putting people through an extreme workout,” he explained.”
At best, this comparison is disingenuous. It is far more dangerous than extreme exercise. The person using the Taser has no idea whether the person receiving the shock has any pre-existing medical conditions. There is usually no knowledge of whether the person receiving the shock has been using any drugs, whether prescribed or not prescribed.
The use of the Taser is a risk. The notion that the Taser is a non-lethal weapon flies in the face of the growing empirical evidence of deaths associated with Taser use. If a person with a heart condition were to have an “extreme workout”, as characterized by Constable Baltzer, there would be gradual warning signs. The body would alert with signs such as chest pains, faintness, shortness of breath, numbness of the extremities and a variety of other warning indicators. The person would discontinue the exercising. To use Constable Baltzer’s comparison to an “extreme workout”, there is no option to discontinue when shocked. The consequence may be a fatality.