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Thursday, January 14, 2010

In-school Taser demonstration by Kankakee cop draws lawsuits

January 14, 2010

URBANA, Ill. — Two federal lawsuits each seek more than $10 million on behalf of two 12-year-old boys who allege a Kankakee police officer shocked them with a stun gun during an in-school demonstration.

The lawsuits were filed Thursday in U.S. District Court in Urbana. Police officials in Kankakee placed the officer on administrative leave after he allegedly used a stun gun on students Tuesday as part of an unauthorized demonstration of the device at Kankakee Junior High School.

The lawsuits name the police officer, the city of Kankakee, Kankakee School District 111 and two teachers. Officials with the city and the school district haven’t returned calls seeking comment.

The boys’ attorney, James Meeks, says they also want the officer fired and criminal charges filed in the case.


The following was posted on January 13, 2010

This story would be unfrickin'believable if events like this weren't happening with such disturbing frequency.

Who can forget "TASER Our Sons and Daughters at Work Day" - Florida-Style

See also: 3 fired, 2 resign after Florida prisons shock kids

And: A Recipe for Disaster: School Cops Are Being Armed with 50,000-Volt Tasers.

January 13, 2010
ABC News, CHICAGO, Illinois

Police respond after students Tasered

Kankakee police responded Wednesday after students at a junior high were Tasered during a demonstration.

"This Taser demonstration was not authorized by the Kankakee Police Department nor was it authorized by Kankakee School District 111," a statement said. "Misuse or abuse of the Taser by any police officer is strictly prohibited by the rules and regulations of the Kankakee Police Department And is subject to discipline. The officer in question was immediately placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation."

School officials are investigating. And one mother is talking about how her son was Tasered.

The mother wanted to stress that her son and the other students in the classroom were not being reprimanded for misbehaving but that the officer was just goofing off. She understands school is a place for an education, but she says this is one lesson her son won't soon forget.

"A cop came in and then he pulled out his Taser, and was like, 'I'm giving out free runs for the Taser to try it out.' And then everybody was like, 'I want to try it.' And I said, 'I'll try it in my finger.' And he was like, 'Let me get you in your thigh,'" said Miles Maiden.

Miles, 12, says the off-duty Kankakee police officer entered the classroom at Kankakee Junior High School and shouted, "Who wants a Taser?"

Miles says the officer then went around the room and Tasered at least three boys, one in the buttocks.

Miles says the officer is friends with the teacher, and last week the same officer came to the classroom and Tasered some of the students in their fingers.

"I'm upset, and at the same time, I'm puzzled 'cause you have this type of grown adult around children and that's not a game that you play with children. That's dangerous. I'm blessed it didn't turn out another way, but at the same time, I'm also upset because it should never happen," said Alta Young.

Young says her son, who suffers from a heart murmur and asthma, began to complain of the pain in his leg, so she took him to the emergency room where he was treated and released.

Colleen Legge, superintendent for Kankakee School District 111, released a statement that says in part, "We are conducting a full investigation of the alleged incident and reviewing protocol regarding police in our schools."

In the meantime, Young is hoping the officer doesn't return to the school.

"At the end of the day, I don't want that man around my child. I don't want anyone of that stature that's doing things like that around my child," said Young.

Young says she is going to follow up with the family's personal physician to make sure the Taser didn't affect her son's heartbeat.

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