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Excessive Taser Use on Minors Prompts Litigation: Taser Reform to Follow?

Police officers have a duty to protect and serve the members of the communities they work for. However, time and again, it seems that a number of officers may use excessive force against those they have sworn to protect; many instances of this excessive use of force involve the use of tasers. Even more disturbing, is the use of tasers on minors, which may lead to serious physical and mental injury to a child. This concern failed to prevent two police officers from tasering 3 children in Southern Illinois, an event that has lead to litigation.

According to a recently filed lawsuit, two officers responded to a call at an adolescent center in Jefferson County, Illinois. Upon their arrival at the scene, they pushed 2 minors onto their beds and tasered them, allegedly, without provocation. According to a spokesperson at the adolescent center, the children had committed no crime and had been linked to no wrongdoing.

This lawsuit raises the important issue of non-lethal use of force by police. Tasers are not meant to kill, however, various studies have shown that their use, especially on children and younger adults, can lead to serious injury. This has not stopped certain police officers from using these weapons with little regard for safety. Police administrators should consider the cost of taser use, as well as appropriate regulation and training. Tasers are not toys; rather they can be a dangerous, sometimes deadly, weapon.

Police officer use of tasers requires restraint and absolute necessity. Taser use should be restricted to controlling only those that pose a threat to others. Proper training in the use and power of tasers should be implemented to all officers. Until stricter regulation of taser use is enacted (or enforced, where regulation already exists), occurrences like the one that prompted the above mentioned lawsuit will continue. Hopefully, this lawsuit, and others like it can bring focus to this issue and a common sense approach to taser use by law enforcement.

Lawsuit Financial supports any effort made by local and national police associations to regulate the use of tasers and train officers to use them appropriately. We call on state and federal legislators to enact appropriate legislation to limit the use of tasers and punish abusers. Police officers should be about making all of us safer; they should be part of the solution, not part of the problem.

If you or someone you love has been injured by a taser or in any type of police brutality or excessive force situation, have hired a lawyer and filed a lawsuit, and the injury or disability has caused you financial hardship, Lawsuit Financial can assist you with non-recourse lawsuit funding. These funds should be used for a necessary purpose as they can be expensive if you win your case. However, the money is yours to keep, free of charge, if you lose your case. Whether you have suffered a taser injury or any other personal injury, Lawsuit Financial is here to help you. Call us, toll free, at 877-377-SUIT (7848) or visit

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