Ninth Circuit upheld ruling limiting use of tasers

On December 29, 2009, the US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit issued a ruling upholding a decision from the US District Court for the Southern District of California that the use of tasers by police must be in response to an "immediate threat." The case arose from a lawsuit filed by Carl Bryan, who Sacramento County police officer Brian McPherson tasered during a traffic stop, causing him to fall face-first onto the asphalt, fracturing teeth and causing facial contusions. The decision followed an Eleventh Circuit ruling from September 2008 in which the court found the police officer in that case was justified in using a stun gun against a suspect during a traffic stop.

Learn more about the laws governing excessive force from the JURIST news archive.


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