TASERs are painful. Incapacitating even (duh). But safe. Unless the TASEE’s hopped-up on some serious stimulants. Or the TASEE has previous health complaints. Or, usually, both. We know this because TASER aggressively defends each and every TASER-related lawsuit in court. And there have been a LOT of ambulance-chasers trying to milk that particular cash cow. None of which hit pay dirt. But here’s one where there’s no question that a police-deployed conducted electrical weapon (CEW) caused the demise of a perp . . .
The incident began in Pine Valley, in March 2012 when Border Patrol agents in an unmarked car tried to pull over Alex Martin.
Martin was allegedly driving the wrong way on Interstate 8, but refused to pull over because it was dark and the car was unmarked.
After chasing Martin for three minutes, he was finally brought to a stop using spike strips.
The dashcam video shows a plainclothes agent trying to open the passenger side door, then smashing the window of Martin’s car before firing the Taser into the vehicle.
That’s when a fireball engulfs the car, blowing the officer back.
Dashcam video then captures the patrol agents quickly pulling away from Martin’s burning vehicle.
Martin’s family is now suing the federal government, claiming wrongful death.
Their lawyer, Eugene Iredale, states that the agents should have smelled the spilled gas in the car, which was ignited by the Taser’s spark.
He also claims that none of the agents tried to save Martin, despite all three patrol agent’s cruisers having fire extinguishers.
The federal government is looking to dismiss the lawsuit though, focusing on previous issues Martin had had with the law.
wftv.com’s report doesn’t include the video, but the still above it still horrifying. I don’t hold out much hope for the lawsuit given that the police don’t have a legal duty to save anyone from anything ever. One of the [many] reason s why anyone who doesn’t carry a firearm is advised to do so.