South Scotland

Carluke, Jedburgh and Aberdeen Taser use incidents 'justified'

Police officer firing a Taser Image copyright PA
Image caption The use of Tasers was investigated in three incidents across Scotland

Investigations have concluded that police use of Tasers at three incidents across Scotland was "necessary and proportionate".

The Police Investigations and Review Commissioner (PIRC) looked at the cases in Aberdeen, Carluke and Jedburgh.

It found that in all the incidents the use of the Tasers by a Specially Trained Officer (STO) had been justified.

No recommendations were made as a result of any of the investigations.

Five hundred STOs have been trained by Police Scotland in the use of Taser devices which have been deployed since June last year.

The investigations focused on the police handling of each of the incidents, including the actions of officers who attended and the decision making process in relation to the use of the Tasers.

The three incidents they looked at were:

  • a 21-year-old man reported in possession of a loaded crossbow in Jedburgh in June 2018
  • a 33-year-old man with a knife threatening to take his own life in Aberdeen later the same month
  • a 35-year-old man swinging a glass bottle at police in Carluke in July last year

The commissioner found that in all three cases, the response of the officers involved was "necessary, proportionate and justified" in limiting the dangers that the men posed and effecting their arrests.

A spokesperson said: "The findings in these cases illustrate that the use of Taser devices by STOs of Police Scotland was appropriate in providing protection to the public, the police officers and indeed a number of those Tasered."

'Incredibly challenging'

All incidents involving a police officer using firearms, including Taser, are referred to the PIRC for independent assessment as standard.

Police Scotland said it was pleased with the outcome of the latest investigations.

Assistant Chief Constable Mark Williams said: "We welcome the findings of these reports.

"Our number one priority is the protection of the public and it is really positive that the PIRC has recognised that in all of these incredibly challenging incidents our officers acted professionally."

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