Highlands & Islands

Police use of Taser in Sheil Bridge incident 'justified'

taser Image copyright PA

A police officer's use of a Taser against a man armed with guns and a knife was "proportionate and justified", according to a watchdog.

The 47-year-old was stunned twice during the incident near Sheil Bridge in Wester Ross on 1 September.

He had been acting in an "aggressive and unpredictable" manner.

The Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (Pirc) said the use of the Taser allowed other officers to safely restrain the man.

A report into the incident said officers were called to scene after concerns were raised that the man was suicidal and had several weapons.

Safe conclusion

Armed police officers initially negotiated with the man.

He threw down two guns and a knife but then he attempted to retrieve the weapons.

The report said the man was Tasered at this point, and he was temporarily incapacitated.

He then began struggling violently with officers who were trying to restrain him and he was Tasered again, before being handcuffed and detained.

Commissioner Kate Frame said: "Faced with a man acting in an aggressive and unpredictable manner who appeared to be intent on retrieving his weapons, the police were justified in discharging the Taser on both occasions to ensure their own safety and those members of the public present.

"This was a life threatening situation which was handled swiftly and professionally by the armed officers, who brought this incident to a safe conclusion."

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