Can You Go to Jail for Tasing Someone?
The contents of this web page are for informational and educational purposes only, and nothing you read is intended to be legal advice. Please review our disclaimer before taking action based upon anything you read or see.
Can you go to jail for tasing someone? Yes. A taser, commonly referred to as a stun gun, is an electrical tool that delivers a 20,000-volt electrostatic voltage that is potent enough to render a person unconscious. Some applications of stun guns are prohibited under American criminal laws. Criminal repercussions, including a prison sentence, may occur if the law does not use a stun gun.
Police often utilize tasers, but they’ve also gained popularity as consumer goods for self-defense. Stun weapons and Tasers are generally legal to own in the United States. This is particularly true in light of recent court rulings that these weapons fall within the Second Constitution’s right to carry arms.
Who may purchase stun guns and Tasers, where they can be brought, and when they can be employed are still often subject to permission requirements and other limitations.
Although the regulations differ from jurisdiction to jurisdiction, mostly from city to city, this post provides a comprehensive overview and a wealth of details. Come along!
What is Tasing?
Tasing is the process of rendering someone unconscious using a taser. There are several causes for this. Tasers are devices that use electricity to hold a person still. Typically, one of two taser kinds may be applied.
The first is a tiny, portable gadget with two metal electrodes that can transmit an electrical current. To produce a shock, this kind of taser must be physically put to the body so that the nodes make contact with the skin.
Because it necessitates being in close contact with someone who could be harmful, some cops choose not to utilize this kind of technology. They will instead choose the other taser, which is more analogous to a pistol and discharges two pins connected to two metal wires.
The pins puncture and stab skin to send an electric charge from the cannon via the cables. This makes it possible to administer a shock at a distance.
Tasers may result in significant harm or perhaps death when electricity is involved. Electrical currents may cause seizures, aberrant brain activity, and even potentially deadly cardiac irregularities by interfering with brain or heart function.
In addition to these effects, being shocked by a taser causes the muscles to stiffen, often leading the victim to fall to the ground helplessly. The person may strike their head while falling if they cannot stop themselves, brace themself, or regulate how they fall. Additionally, they can fall so hard that they can’t breathe or land in a manner that hurts them.
Legal and Illegal Uses of Tasing
The Legal and illegal uses of tasing have been highlighted in the table below.
|Legal uses||Illegal uses|
|To defend oneself.||To commit theft and criminality.|
|You have completed taser safety courses.||In places where weapons are prohibited, such as classrooms at universities, childcare facilities, and schools.|
|You are above the age of 18 and not a juvenile.||If the offense is not serious.|
|You don’t have a criminal history.||When employed as a weapon against someone else in a dispute.|
|The individual now poses a danger to law enforcement or others.||When directed against law enforcement or first responders.|
|The criminal attempts to flee or violently fights being apprehended.|
Circumstances Surrounding Tasing
Law enforcement often uses Tasers and other stun guns to subdue fleeing or aggressive offenders. However, Tasers are becoming more popular with those outside of law enforcement who want to purchase or even carry one with them at all times for personal safety.
As per Taser International, using tasers for law enforcement is acceptable in every state. However, there are a few jurisdictions where customers cannot own a Taser for personal use or possession.
Possession and usage may be restricted in other states. Customers may own Tasers in Connecticut but are not allowed to carry them in their cars or on their person. Other states do not need a permit or CCW license to restrict possession to a person’s home or place of business.
Tasers may be used for reasons other than those listed in the table above, even in jurisdictions where carrying one or owning one is permitted.
Self-defense is often only acceptable in the event of a direct threat of violence. Taser usage that is not legally justified in self-defense or use of the device as a weapon against some other person may be deemed assault and result in legal action on both a criminal and civil level.
Legal Consequences of Tasing Someone
Taser use carries with it a range of legal repercussions. First and foremost, certain places prohibit the use of a taser and its possession.
In certain areas, using a taser on particular people, including police officers or emergency personnel, is a very severe crime.
The circumstances of the use of the weapon in the lack of particular legislation regarding the ownership or use of the device greatly influence the illegality of taser usage. Along with the conclusion of the occurrence, this is also true.
Most states have created felony and minor laws to punish different outcomes of a fight with a taser. However, some states may treat minor altercations as civil offenses, such as tickets. For both felony and minor actions, prison time is a potential penalty. However, the maximum prison term varies depending on the state and the crime’s severity.
Punishment for Illegal use of Tasing
In each tasing case, going to prison is a possibility, but whether one or both of the participants end up, there is far more complicated.
The prosecutor must first decide what charges to file. The prosecutor’s choice to proceed will depend on the case’s specifics, including whether any or all of the witnesses were drunk at the time of the occurrence.
He must have confidence that he can prove the alleged crimes beyond a shadow of a doubt. And he won’t proceed if he can’t prove it with the evidence he has.
But suppose one or both of the combatants are accused of a crime.
Criminals don’t always wind themselves in prison just for breaching the law. The court will determine if incarceration is necessary for the given situation. Additionally, he will determine if community service or another kind of duty carried out under the supervision of the prison, such as garbage cleanup, would be more appropriate for the offender.
Defense against Unlawful Tasing
When making an arrest, police are permitted to use reasonable force. The arrestee may be eligible to file a lawsuit for injuries sustained if excessive force is used to make the arrest.
When police employ tasers, the topic of unnecessary force often comes up. This emits incapacitating excruciating electric probes. And for some individuals, this might result in heart attacks or other severe physical side effects. Depending on the situation, using this kind of weapon may constitute excessive force.
Taser use is more likely to be justified if a significant or violent crime occurs. Taser usage is less likely to be permissible if the infraction is anything like a moving violation or passively resisting an officer.
But there are other things to consider besides the alleged crime’s character. It could be acceptable for an officer to take a belligerent and unwilling person, even if the offense were minimal.
Examples of Unlawful Tasing Cases
Numerous instances of using a Taser stun gun to harm the defendant have occurred. Some of these people subsequently passed away from their wounds. When utilizing these weapons against people, many police officers are perceived as cruel and use excessive force.
Repeated gun usage often results in interior problems, including damaged nerves. Even campus police on university grounds might be held responsible for the harm caused by these gadgets. While some disputes are resolved outside of court, others are resolved after a drawn-out trial.
Unfortunately, most people don’t understand how to legally and safely use these firearms. This is particularly upsetting when tales of police enforcement using the taser on unarmed people who aren’t resisting arrest or interrogation arise.
Legal Protection when Tasing
Certain states and municipalities may directly regulate Tasers or shock guns. This is accompanied by laws and ordinances that mention or refer to them by name when defining a weapon for gun control. For instance, Tasers and shock guns are considered dangerous weapons under Iowa’s firearms regulations. Additionally, the law expressly permits adults to possess stun guns without permission, but not Tasers.
However, in other places, similar devices can be subject to broader regulations that govern the ownership, transportation, and use of firearms or other weaponry. Sometimes it requires an appeal court ruling or a state attorney general’s judgment to determine if Tasers fall under one of the several categories of weapons.
Best practices when tasing: According to recommendations of the Police Executive Research Group, prolonged use of tasers (more than 15 seconds) may raise the risk of fatalities or severe injuries and should be prevented.
Additionally, it is advised that police give someone “a fair chance to cooperate” before using force or tasing.
Tasers are portable electrical current-based weapons that may render a person briefly unconscious. Although owning and using a taser is mostly lawful in America, there are several situations in which doing so is against the law. To contact police departments or file a lawsuit against the offender, it is crucial to understand when these laws take effect and how they operate in each state.
I’m a driven and accomplished law graduate and post-graduate, passionate about sharing my legal expertise via my blog. I hold a Bachelor’s degree in Law from the University of London (UK) and a Master’s in Law from the University of Derby (UK). Both gave me the foundational knowledge and skills to excel in my chosen career path.
Throughout my academic journey, I have gained extensive knowledge in various fields of Law, including Corporate and Business Law in the USA, Criminal Law, International Law, US Copyright law, and most importantly, American Constitutional law.
Comments are closed.