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CMHA Calls For Better Trained Police For Dealing With The Mentally Ill

by Medindia Content Team on  December 29, 2005 at 3:36 PM Mental Health News   - G J E 4
CMHA Calls For Better Trained Police For Dealing With The Mentally Ill
The Canadian Mental Health Association (CMHA) has called for better training for policemen while dealing with suspects who suffer from mental illnesses. The Alberta Police had used a Taser on a man, which resulted in his death. The CMHA is of the opinion that this could have been avoided if specialized training had been provided to the men in uniform.
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The victim was a well-dressed man who was apparently going through a psychotic episode. He was seen to be screaming and disrupting the traffic on Christmas Eve. There are calls for the use of less lethal weapons than Tasers which delivers an electrical shock to stun the suspect. There have been over 100 deaths as a result of the use of the weapon, according to Amnesty International. Research into the subject has also revealed that the deaths are not entirely due to the tasers, but more due to the usage of illicit drugs by the suspects.

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The autopsy which is yet to be completed is expected to shed more light on the incident. The police are yet to confirm that the taser was really used, even though they admit that there was a struggle when the officers tried to subdue the man. Tasers are capable of delivering a 50,000 volt surge of electricity. The political leadership of the city maintains that the taser is a fairly safe weapon to use to stun suspects, and far less dangerous than a service pistol.

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