Friday 9 December 2016

Police suspended after using stun gun on violent boy (10)

Paul Raynor in Indiana

Published 03/04/2010 | 05:00

Two police officers called to deal with a violent 10-year-old boy have been suspended after one used a stun gun on the child and another hit him in the mouth.

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The child suffered no significant injuries, but both officers were placed on paid administrative leave while police in Indiana in the US investigate the incident.

Martinsville police chief Jon Davis said he believed the officers could have controlled the six-and-a-half-stone boy without using force.

"I think they could have just restrained the young man," he said at a news conference, ". . . just held him down."

The sheriff's department had taken over the investigation, and the police department would hold an internal review of the incident, which happened on Tuesday, Mr Davis said.

Captain William Jennings and Officer Darren Johnson responded to a call to find the boy -- who was not identified -- hitting, kicking and spitting at a care worker as she held him down at a day care centre, according to police reports.

Another woman, identified as the boy's guardian, was also present.

The officers tried to restrain the boy, but he remained violent and kicked Officer Johnson, according to police.

In a written report, the officer said he showed the child his Taser stun gun and pushed the button to display the zap of electricity.

He warned he would use the gun if the boy did not settle down. The boy then lunged at his guardian and Officer Johnson said he used his stun gun for one to two seconds.

Capt Jennings's report said the boy then calmed down.

The incident was at least the fourth time in two years in which US police have used stun guns on children.

Irish Independent

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