Report: Medical examiners link Tasers to five deaths

Monday, July 19th 2004, 9:27 am
By: News On 6

(Phoenix-AP) -- The manufacturer says Taser electric stun guns have never killed or injured anyone -- but a newspaper's investigation suggests otherwise.

The Arizona Republic says medical examiners have found the devices may have played a role in at least five deaths. Police sometimes use the weapons to subdue people who won't obey commands.

The newspaper says medical examiners in three cases involving suspects who died in police custody cited Tasers as a cause or a contributing factor in the deaths.

Taser International says in 42 cases of people who died after being shot by a Taser, the stun guns were cleared every time.

But the Republic found the company relied on media accounts and anecdotal information from police for most of its analysis.

Taser's CEO says: "I know in my heart what the truth is. Taser hasn't killed any of these people."