Taser: Police in Bochum: Task forces will soon have Tasers with them

The police in Bochum introduces tasers, which emergency services will soon be equipped with. How the devices work and when to use them.

The first will be from the end of next week policewomen and police officers in Bochum equipped with tasers. The devices were presented at a press event on Friday, giving an insight into how they work and when they are used.

Police officers in Bochum, Herne and Witten receive tasers

Distance Electro-Impulse Devices (DEIG) are the names of the tasers that the police will gradually introduce for Bochum, Herne and Witten in the security and exchange service. The goal: They should have a strong de-escalating effect in situations and thus increase security. Emergency services from the Bochum police station have been trained since July.

When the taser is triggered, two darts will fly out of it. The Bochum police illustrated this with a video at the press conference. The cartridges move at two different angles – three and a half and twelve degrees. The ideal meeting point is the upper body and thighs, as explained by two police trainers. The two poles conduct electricity through the victim’s body – 1.3 milliamps. In a fraction of a second, impulses are repeatedly emitted, which takes a total of five seconds.

What happens when the taser is used?

But what happens when the taser is used? “The person is paralyzed for a short time and can no longer move,” explains Ralph van der Lip, project group leader and police chief. More specifically, neuromuscular paralysis occurs and the person falls to the ground. The fall is the greatest risk, the use of the taser itself left two small puncture marks and sore muscles.

The devices are already being used in around 100 countries. There have already been studies with more than 60 different pacemaker models, and despite their use, they all continued.

The tasers, which are classified as a weapon according to the police law, may be used if an aggression has preceded it – against the police or against third parties. “It’s an individual decision,” says police chief Jörg Lukat. If the taser is operated, the device saves it. In addition, operations must be recorded in the police report.

Police officers are trained for three days

There are two requirements for the guards to receive the new resources. 80 percent of the police officers must be trained, each training lasts three days. The tasers may only be carried in the patrol car if both police officers have received internal training.

Numerous police forces in Bochum have already done this, so the first ones – the guard in Mitte – will be on the road with teasers from the end of next week. The following week it will continue in Herne. The equipment should be completed by the end of the year. How high the costs are could not be said at the press conference on Friday.

The police officers in the districts in Dortmund, Düsseldorf, Gelsenkirchen and in the Rhein-Erft district have been using the tasers for a long time. They were introduced as part of a NRW pilot project. “Their experience has flowed into us,” says van der Lip.

In 80 percent of the cases, the taser is not triggered

According to the Bochum police, there have been 200 situations with Tasers in North Rhine-Westphalia so far. In 80 percent of the cases, it was enough to threaten the operation – which led to de-escalation without triggering the taser.

But there are also dissenting voices regarding the equipment of the Bochum police with tasers. A small protest demonstration took place on the sidelines of the Taser presentation. About 15 men and women gathered in front of the police headquarters on Uhlandstrasse. For example, one sign reads: “Taser off, save electricity”.

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