Thursday 23 November 2017

Taser used on man threatening to harm himself with syringe

Mark Hilliard

GARDAI used a Taser gun on a man brandishing a syringe and threatening to harm himself by injecting air into his own neck.

The weapon -- which hits its target with a five-second shock of 50,000 volts of electricity -- was fired after a three-hour stand-off yesterday between the man and gardai who used a specialist negotiator.

The events were sparked by a domestic dispute at a private address in Cherrywood, Clondalkin, at around 5.45am.

While the nature of the original dispute is unclear, it is understood that a female occupant of the house fled the scene before gardai arrived.

Once there, a stand-off ensued between the man who held a syringe to his neck threatening to harm himself and gardai.

At around 9.30am, members of the Emergency Response Unit (ERU), concerned for his safety, used a Taser gun to subdue him.

Injecting air directly into a vein can cause an embolism and have potentially fatal consequences.

The man, who is aged in his 40s, was brought to Tallaght Hospital, although his condition was not thought to be serious.

A source indicated that he was upset following the domestic disturbance and gardai were not prepared to ignore the serious threats he was making to his own life.

The use of Tasers by the gardai was sanctioned in 2007 but they are only used in extreme circumstances.

Instead of bullets, they use compressed air to fire twin electrical cables that trail back to the handset and incapacitate their target by causing uncontrollable contraction of muscles.

Irish Independent

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