Extended Operational Deployment of Taser
Dated: 23 Sep 2009
NOT PROTECTIVELY MARKED
POLICY TITLE: Extended Operational Deployment of Taser
OWNING DIRECTORATE: Local Policing and Operations
AUTHOR: Chief Inspector, Planning & Coordination, Operations Department
CONTACT DETAILS: 03456 043 043 Ext. 69507
AIM OF POLICY: To outline the Force’s policy in respect of the use and deployment of Taser as a less lethal option.
BENEFIT OF POLICY: To advise staff of the deployment considerations and the national policies applying thereto.
REASON FOR POLICY: To demonstrate that the introduction of Taser is in accordance with ACPO guidelines and is to a national standard.
DESCRIPTION OF POLICY:
The policy of Northumbria Police, in relation to the use of Taser, is in accordance with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) Manual of Guidance on the Police Use of Firearms.
Northumbria Police participated in a successful trial of the extended operational deployment of Taser which is now complete. The extended operational deployment of Taser is now a standard operating procedure.
Taser will be issued to AFOs and non AFOs by the appropriate authorising officer, when that officer has:
“reason to suppose that officers in the course of their duty may have to protect the public, themselves and / or the subject(s) at incidents of violence or threats of violence of such severity, that they will need to use force”.
AFOs and non AFOs will have the authority to self-authorise where the threat warrants the deployment of Taser, under Section 3 of the Criminal Law Act.
For spontaneous incidents, where Taser may be an appropriate response to a developing threat, the Silver Commander, including the Critical Incident Manager (CIM), will be the minimum level of authorising officer.
Pre-Planned Operations, including Pre-Emptive Strike Using Taser; Silver Firearms Commanders can authorise the deployment of Taser as part of any pre-planned operation. Owing to the issues associated with any pre-emptive strike, such operations will only be authorised by ACPO or certain Designated Cadre Silvers, and carried out by Specialist Firearms Officers acting in a Taser-only capacity.
OVERT ARMING AUTHORITY
To enable officers to have ready access to Taser, to deal with appropriate threats, Taser will be carried overtly by suitably authorised officers; AFOs and non AFOs.
Only AFOs can be deployed covertly with Taser in certain specialist operations.
Non AFOs will only carry Taser when in uniform.
SOURCE DOCUMENT: Article 2 of the Human Rights Act 1998, and the right to respect for private and family life under Article 8.
GROUPS AFFECTED: All Police Officers
ACCESS AND DISCLOSURE RESTRICTIONS: None
This instruction is designed to avoid discrimination and in accordance with the Human Rights Act 1998 and its underlying principles.