March 23, 2011
Sydney Morning Herald
A type of amnesia can cause police to forget how many times they fire their weapons, a death in custody inquest has been told by a US Taser expert.
Richard Wyant on Wednesday gave evidence at an inquest into the death of Antonio Galeano after he was tasered multiple times by police.
The 39-year-old died on the floor of his girlfriend's home at Brandon, in north Queensland, in June 2009, after police were called to a disturbance.
Advertisement: Story continues below Senior Constable Craig Myles has admitted tasering Galeano eight times.
But the Taser gun he used recorded that Galeano had been tasered 28 times with a 50,000 volt shock.
Mr Wyant, giving video testimony from Baltimore, Maryland, said it was not uncommon for a police officer to forget the number of times he pulled the trigger of a Taser or a gun.
He said the phenomenon was described as critical stress amnesia.
Mr Wyant, who holds a licence to use a Taser in the US, said the only time he had cause to use a Taser he was affected by critical stress amnesia.
"I'd swear I pulled the trigger twice, but I really pulled it five times," he said.
He said he knew of another case where a police officer had said he fired two shots, but an empty magazine lay on the ground nearby and other shots had been fired after reloading.
The inquest continues.
WELCOME to TRUTH ... not TASERS
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
March 23, 2011