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Saturday, June 27, 2009

Happy Birthday, Bob

This week marked the five-year anniversary of my brother's death. My only brother. Bob was his name. Bob was the 58th person in North America to die after he was tasered. Bob was alone in the washroom in the building where he lived. He weighed 136 pounds. He was UNARMED and posed NO CREDIBLE THREAT to anyone, least of all to the THIRTEEN Vancouver police officers who were present. He was tasered at least twice, probably more. He died moments later.

Had Bob been treated with some modicum of compassion instead of multiple 50,000 volt taser jolts, he would have been celebrating his 50th birthday today.

1 comment:

Critical Mass said...

How many times does this sequence of events need to play out? When will good men recognize and stop this scenario? ~


Man dies after being shot with Taser

A 37-year-old Fontana man died Monday morning after being Tasered when he became violent while being treated for an apparent methamphetamine overdose, Fontana police said.

Police and fire were summoned to the 7500 block of Cherimoya Avenue by Shawn Iinuma's family at 1:15 a.m. because he had been using meth and was acting strangely, investigators wrote in a statement.

A lengthy struggle ensued after he became violent and police Tasered him, the statement said. Iinuma stopped breathing after being restrained. He died at Kaiser Permanente Fontana Medical Center.

--Richard Brooks



Occam's Razor, the generally accepted principle of Logically Connected Progressions, or, to quote Sir Isaac Newton, proclaims: "We are to admit no more causes of natural things than such as are both true and **sufficient** to explain their appearances. Therefore, to the same natural effects we must, so far as possible, assign the same causes."

Shawn Iinuma, a human being, was intoxicated with drugs, involved in a "lengthy struggle", tasered and he died. He didn't die during the "lengthy struggle", but only after the pain/torture/control device was used, where what remaining ability to use his muscles, was mindlessly, rapidly depleted by a device which has no ability to know when the muscles, including the heart, have reached an inability to resume normal function.

The common intervening factor in these deaths is the introduction of a "control device, or a method of restraint", and the post-mortem search for other factors ignores Occam's Razor, which says all the factors you need to look at are the agitated state of the arrestee, his near state of exhaustion and the introduction of a dangerous electrical device which rapidly exercises muscles without any feedback mechanism to warn that the normal chemical factors which will stop a spiral to certain death, have been over-ridden by the stun device.

It is approaching insanity to look for other "causes" or explanations. Occam and Sir Isaac Newton would conclude "It was the taser/control/restraint which led to this death."