MORE police officers in Warwickshire will be trained to use Tasers in the fight against violent criminals.
The number of frontline Warwickshire Police officers Taser trained will increase to 28 per cent over the next two years – but the force would not tell the Observer exactly how many officers that amounted to for ‘operational reasons’.
Asst Ch Con Debbie Tedds said: “The safety and protection of our officers and the public is our ultimate priority and the use of Taser plays an integral part of this.
“Recent events have led to national debate on this important topic, and alongside many other forces, we made the decision to bid for additional funding for Taser trained officers within Warwickshire.
“This news has been very much welcomed by the force, and will play a significant role in keeping both our communities and our officers safe.
“Warwickshire is a safe place to live, work and visit, but when situations do arise which pose a significant risk to members of the public and our workforce, taser remains an important tool for our officers.
“However, it is not something we use lightly, and often just the mere presence of a Taser is enough of a deterrent to bring such situations to a quick and safe conclusion.
“The selection of these additional trained officers will commence in the coming months and they will undergo a comprehensive training package that ensures they can continue to appropriately respond to incidents that may require the use of Taser.”
Three-quarters of Warwickshire residents asked agreed officers on the frontline carrying Tasers made them feel safer, and nine out of ten also agreed officers should be given more protection when carrying out their duties.
The Home Office recently invited funding bids from all forces for additional Tasers, and following a strategic assessment, a bid was submitted by Warwickshire Police.