Tasers Drive Jump in State Police’s Use of Force

Police Accountability, Racial Justice

The use of force by Massachusetts State Police officers nearly doubled in 2016, department statistics show, driven by troopers’ widespread use of Tasers, according to the Boston Globe.

Law enforcement’s use of Tasers has proved controversial with civil rights groups. Instead of replacing the use of lethal force — typically firearms — critics fear they instead substitute for nonviolent deescalation tactics.

“Excessive use of force, including overreliance on Tasers, explains the growing distrust and tension between law enforcement and the public,” said Ivan Espinoza-Madrigal, executive director of the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Economic Justice.

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