Taser video: Officer's actions which left man with injuries 'deemed appropriate'

Stevenage Town Square. Picture: Karyn Haddon

A video of a man being tasered by officers in Stevenage's Town Square has been circulated on social media - Credit: Karyn Haddon

A video of a man being tasered by police in Stevenage has been making the rounds on social media - and officers have now responded after some raised concerns about the level of force used. 

The video taken by a passer by - which has been shared on social media and seen by the Comet - shows officers restraining a man on the ground outside Starbucks in the Town Square, before later tasering him and telling him to "stay down". 

Later, the footage shows an officer asking the man to get on "his belly", and then kicking the man - who was sat upright - on to his front, causing him injuries to his face. 

A Herts police spokeswoman told the Comet: "Members of the public may be concerned following an incident in Stevenage town centre on Tuesday, however, the video in circulation online shows only part of what happened.

"Prior to the arrest of the male, numerous attempts had been made to communicate and pacify him without resorting to force. These were ineffective and the man continued to behave aggressively.

"The male was arrested as he was deemed to be a risk due to his behaviour and officers present were acting to protect themselves and members of the public.

"The matter has been referred to the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Professional Standards Department, and CCTV footage of the whole incident reviewed. The officer’s actions were deemed appropriate in the circumstances.

Most Read

"Use of force by officers is unfortunate, but considered justified when a person behaves in a highly aggressive manner, continues to resist officers’ requests and represents a threat to officers or members of the public.

"Officers using taser are also required to keep two hands on the device at all times, and so it is deemed appropriate for officers to use feet, knees or other parts of their body to assist with the detention or control of individuals.

"In this case the man’s injuries as a result of his restraint were minor, however officers requested an ambulance in any case and he was also taken to hospital as a precaution. He was discharged a short time later.

"Shortly before 3pm on Tuesday, October 19, police became aware of a male reportedly acting anti-socially in Stevenage town centre.

"The male appeared intoxicated and became highly aggressive when approached by the police officer and two PCSOs in attendance.

"A physical altercation occurred and the man reportedly took the PC’s body worn video camera and damaged it by throwing it to the floor. The man allegedly continued to be aggressive and the PC has been unable to physically restrain him, despite numerous attempts.

"As a result PAVA spray and then taser were eventually deployed before he was detained.

"The man has suffered a minor cut to his face as a result of officers’ continued attempts to detain him. The injury was treated by ambulance staff at the scene and later taken to Lister Hospital as a precaution, however he was later discharged with no serious injuries.

"A 60-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of assault on a police officer and criminal damage. He has been released while the investigation continues."

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter