Freedom of Information request highlights 25% increase in police Taser use on children

by Gun Control Network on 19-04-2016

A recent Freedom of Information request reported by the Daily and Sunday Express has highlighted a significant increase in police Taser use on under-18s in the UK in the last calendar year.

In 2015, at least 331 children had Tasers drawn on them by police, a 24% increase on the 266 children targeted the previous year. The youngest child on whom police drew a Taser was nine, while children as young as 12 have been shot with the 50,000 volt weapons.

As only 35 of the 43 police forces in England and Wales responded in full to the information request, the actual figures are expected to be somewhat higher.

Of the police forces who did respond, Greater Manchester Police were found to have fired the weapon most frequently against children, a total of 13 times in 2015.

The United Nations is expected to expect to call for a ban on Taser use against children in UK at an upcoming hearing, and to reiterate the serious risk of physical and psychological harm the high-voltage weapons pose to vulnerable individuals such as children.

At present, police officers armed with Tasers in the UK are required to consider the vulnerability of the individual, including factors such as age and stature, when discharging the weapons.

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