Dear police: Feel free to tase children at will. According to a new study reviewing 100 cases in which tasers were used to subdue adolescent suspects, doctors found that the kids were just fine afterwards. Hurray for brutality!
The findings of the Wake Forrest study called "Conducted Electrical Weapon (TASER) Use Against Minors: A Shocking Analysis" appear in this month's issue of Pediatric Emergency Care. The researchers looked at 2026 cases in which police used tasers and found that they're blasting kids 13-17 with with high-voltage electroshock weapons five-percent of the time. According to Dr. Alison R. Gardner the tasers did no long-term harm. From the release:
"We were looking closely for increased risk of cardiac effects and bodily injuries because of the differing body size and build of adolescents, but there were no significant injuries reported for this age group," said Gardner. "There were 20 mild injuries recorded and the majority of these were expected superficial puncture wounds from the weapons' probes."
Of course, the researchers caution that because the average tased adolescent was 16 years old and 168 pounds, the data is actually skewed towards people with adult physiology. We sure hope the police read that fine print because we'd hate to see some not-quite-so-adult kid get seriously injured because the police were quivering in their boots. [Newswise via Pediatric Emergency Care via Twitter]