Taser - M26 Guidelines, St Cloud Hospital Security, 2002
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TITLE: M26 ADVANCED TASER EFFECTIVE DATE: January 25, 2002: I. PURPOSE The purpose of this policy sets the guidelines for the St. Cloud Hospital Security and Safety Department’s policy regarding deployment of the M26 Advanced TASER, referred to from here on in as M26. II. DISCUSSION The M26 is deployed as an additional officer tool and is not intended to replace self-defense techniques or to be used as a restraint. The M26 is to be used to control dangerous or violent subjects when a weapon is involved or there is reasonable expectation that it will be unsafe for officers to approach within contact range of the subject. Each M26 has a data port that stores the date and time of each firing of the weapon. The data protects the officer from claims of excessive force by providing complete and accurate documentation of each firing. The M26 falls in the category of less than lethal force technology and equipment defined as: Those items, when used properly, are less likely to result in death or serious physical injury than force commonly referred to as “deadly.” Less than lethal force is defined as force used to subdue or render a subject non-threatening with a lower probability of effecting fatal consequences. A. III. The M26 fires two probes up to a distance of 21 feet from a replaceable cartridge. These probes are connected to the weapon by high voltage insulated wire. When probes make contact with the target, the M26 transmits powerful electrical pulses along the wires and into the target through up to two inches of clothing. The pulses send 26-watt electrical signals to temporarily override the central nervous system and directly control the skeletal muscles. This causes an uncontrollable contraction of the muscle tissue, allowing the M26 to cause temporary physical debilitation to a person, regardless of pain tolerance or mental focus. PROCEDURE A. The M26 shall be issued to an used only by officers who have completed the St. Cloud Hospital department’s user or instructor TASER training program. B. Only properly functioning and charged M26’s shall be carried on duty. TITLE: M26 ADVANCED TASER PAGE 2 IV. C. Each discharge, including accidental discharges of an M26, shall be investigated and documented. A SUPERVISORY TASER USE REPORT shall be completed after each use of the M26. Discharges of the M26 during an approved training session will not require routine completion of these forms or further investigation unless an injury occurs during the training session. The M26 will not be demonstrated at any time unless during an approved training session. D. The M26 is programmed to deliver a 5-second electrical current. The officer using the weapon can shorten the automatic 5-second cycle by turning the weapon off. It is recommended that during field deployment and use of the weapons, the full 5-second cycle be delivered to gain maximum effectiveness and compliance of the subject TASERed. E. NEVER aim the M26 at the eyes or the face. It is laser sighted. The top probe will follow the front and rear sights and the laser sight. The bottom probe will travel at an 8-degree downward angle below the aimed point/laser sighted area. The bottom probe will drop approximately 1 foot for every 7 feet it travels from the weapon to target. F. Keep hands away from the front of the weapon at all times unless the safety is forward and the M26 is deactivated. G. DO NOT fire the M26 near flammable liquids or fumes. The M26 can ignite gas and other flammables. Some self-defense sprays are flammable and should not be used in conjunction with the M26. H. Replace the cartridges by the expiration date. All expired cartridges will be turned into the Director of Security and Safety for use during training exercises or for disposable. I. All officers will have their own battery pack that will be the responsibility of that officer. Batteries will be maintained at a proper level and be replaced as needed. DIRECTOR OF SECURITY OR DESIGNEE RESPONSIBILITIES A. Review each use of an M26 by officers. (Supervisory TASER Use Report) B. Ensure training on less than lethal devices provided as needed. 1. A certified M26 instructor will conduct training, basic user certification for the M26. TITLE: M26 ADVANCED TASER PAGE 3 2. V. VI. All training should be coordinated through the Director of Security and Safety. M26 EQUIPPED OFFICERS A. Carry the M26 on duty unless specifically exempted by higher authority. B. The M26 shall be carried on the officers’ duty belts in a fully loaded position with one extra 21 foot cartridge in the holster. C. The officer must record the serial number of the TASER on their daily log. D. When not in use the M26 shall be secured properly in the officer’s holster and treated as a weapon. The M26 will only be removed from its holster when it is to be discharged or taken out of service. The M26 is not to be subjected to prolonged heat or cold. The M26 will be stored in the office and secured in a gun locker when not in use. E. Ensure the batteries of the M26 are properly charged. Duracell Ultra Alkaline AA batteries are the only authorized batteries. When checking the batteries, the air cartridge must be removed. A blinking LED light indicates that M26 is on. The M26 must be tested at the beginning and end of each shift without a cartridge. F. Before discharging the M26 the officer should notify other officers on the scene and responding officers so that they are aware that its use is eminent. This should be done by using the code word “TASER.” G. The air cartridge and probe shall be retained as evidence. The wires shall be wound around the cartridge and the probes inverted into the portals they deployed from. This will prevent the sharp ends from penetrating the evidence envelope. Tapes should be placed over the portals to ensure the probe is in the cartridge. The evidence shall be placed in a biohazard container and sealed. TREATMENT OF PERSONS SUBJECTED TO THE M26 A. After securing the subject in handcuffs and other appropriate restraints the M26 officer shall remove the probes using the prescribed methods. However, if the probes imbed in soft tissue areas such as the neck, face, and groin the officer shall require the subject to be treated in the ETC and the probes removed only by medical personnel. Removal from other areas will be at the discretion of the M26 officer. The following is the removal procedure. TITLE: M26 ADVANCED TASER PAGE 4 1. Officer shall wear medical gloves. 2. The officer shall place one finger on either side of the probe and stretch the skin taut. 3. Using a brisk pull, the officer shall pull the probe out of the subject. 4. The puncture site shall be wiped with a sterile alcohol swab and adhesive bandage applied to the site. 5. Alcohol swabs, gloves, and bandage packing shall be disposed of in a biohazard receptacle. VII. B. Once in custody, the officer shall advise the ETC staff that the person has been subjected to the M26 and relate the time of the incident. If the probes penetrate the skin the puncture site shall be brought to the attention of the ETC staff. Only ETC staff may remove probes that imbed in soft tissue areas such as the neck, face, groin, or eyes. C. Officers must be aware that one easily overlooked aspect of injury in shooting a subject with the M26 is that of falling from a standing position. ETC staff should perform a thorough physical examination with particular emphasis on secondary injuries. TACTICAL DEPLOYMENT A. Use verbal commands and point laser site at subject prior to firing. B. Have additional cartridge available or a second M26 ready to fire in case probes miss the target or there is a malfunction. C. Have back-up present to prepare to arrest or use other force options as appropriate and necessitated by the situation. D. Aim at center mass and from the rear if possible. E. Use cover and distance to ensure officer safety. F. If the suspect runs, the officer must run also to prevent wires from breaking. G. Avoid use near roofs or on the edge of buildings to eliminate the possibility of the subject falling. TITLE: M26 ADVANCED TASER PAGE 5 H. Avoid use on subjects in deep bodies of water due to the chance of drowning. VIII. RESPONSE TO RESISTANCE ISSUES A. The M26 may be used from up to 21 feet away when the subject is a threat from a distance and the officer is at risk of injury if he or she attempts to close the gap. Other deployment considerations include eminent threat to officers or others, suspect activity resisting arrest, use of a weapon, severity of the crime, attempting to evade by fight. Officer subject factors that may be considered: 1. Age 2. Sex 3. Pregnancy (avoid use if possible on late term women as the M26 could cause complications from a secondary injury or fall) 4. Skill level 5. Multiple subjects/officers 6. Relative strength Special Circumstances: IX. 1. Closeness of weapon 2. Injury of exhaustion of officer 3. Officer on ground 4. Distance between officer and subject 5. Special knowledge 6. Availability of other options M26 ADVANCED TASER INSTRUCTOR TITLE: M26 ADVANCED TASER PAGE 6 A. The M26 instructor shall receive, inspect, and ensure the maintenance and replacement of the M26 devices assigned to departmental personnel. B. Establish and maintain systems to record issuance of the M26 and the air cartridges. Serial Numbers should be recorded. C. Maintain an adequate supply of batteries and air cartridges for replacement. D. Return defective or damaged M26 TASER and cartridges to supplier. E. Obtains service and/or replacement for defective or damaged M26 components from the supplier F. Receive and maintain used cartridges packaged as evidence. G. Provide annual re-training to certified users. H. Review copies of the “Supervisory TASER Use Report” for completeness. I. Maintain training updates from Air TASER International. I have read the preceding policy on the use and deployment of the M26 Advanced TASER and fully understand it. Any questions that I may have had have been explained to my satisfaction. Officer Signature Date The above officer has reviewed this policy in my presence and has indicated to me that he/she fully understands it and that any questions they may have had have been explained either by the M26 Advanced TASER instructor or myself. Supervisor Signature Date