April 8, 2009
6News - Indiana
NOBLESVILLE, Ind. -- A former Hamilton County sheriff's deputy has filed suit against the department, claiming its Taser training policy is unconstitutional.
Last year, the county made it a requirement for all deputies and correction officers to carry Taser guns and, as part of the training, made it mandatory that everyone had to experience the shock of a Taser, 6News' Jennifer Carmack reported.
Ray Robert, who worked as a special deputy serving court papers for the sheriff's department, declined the training, providing a doctor's note that instructed he avoid the Taser shock.
"They just said with the plate being in my back, the bones, they didn't want to take the chance of anything happening," he said.
Roberts said that when he went to Sheriff Doug Carter with the information, he was fired.
"He said, 'Well, you have to be tased or that's the end of your job,'" Robert said.
But Carter said Robert wasn't simply fired, but in fact was offered another position for the same pay within the department, which he refused.
Carter said he stands by his decision to require the training.
"Everyone is trained the same way. He is no exception, nor will he be," Carter said. "The reality-based training is so, so important, not just for the officer, but as or more importantly for the people we're sworn to protect."
Robert filed a suit in federal court seeking back pay, to be restored to his former job and to have the training policy overturned.
Many police departments, including the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department, have a similar Taser training policy.
WELCOME to TRUTH ... not TASERS
Wednesday, April 08, 2009
April 8, 2009