The latest Police shooting appears to be a good example of where a Tazer may have saved a life.

Anyone who thinks that pepper spray would be effective enough in stopping a charging man with a hammer aimed at your head, should try offering their own head up to be made into scrambled eggs.

It’s amusing to read that the group “Campaign Against the Tazer” claims not to be against the Tazer in all circumstances.  Greg O’Connor pointed out that makes their name look pretty silly then.

There is an argument against the Tazer.  Because it is (almost always) non-lethal, there is a risk Police will use it when it isn’t necessary.  We’ve seen this in the United States (mainly with private security though).  And in NZ we have seen occasions when Police have used pepper spray without proper justification.

But it is a balancing act.  Does the risk of tazers being used inappropriately outweigh the likelihood that lives will be saved (both Police and attackers) by having available a weapon between pepper spray and a pistol?

I don’t think it does, and that Tazers on balance will be a good thing.  However the Police will need to clamp down ruthlessly on any use of them when not justified.