" Its unclear to how many times the Taser was deployed "..
" I cannot confirm that it was an actual robbery "..
Security camera footage appears to show a man who died
after being tasered by police in Sydney yesterday was running away from
officers before they used the stun gun on him.Police are still
trying to identify the man who died after officers used capsicum spray
and a Taser on him in Sydney's CBD early on Sunday morning, but believe
he may have been South American.The man was initially thought to
have been involved in a robbery of a convenience store in The Rocks, but
police have since admitted they are not sure they had the right person.Now
commercial television networks have obtained CCTV footage, apparently
showing the man running from officers before the stun gun was used. Shot through a window, the footage shows a man running, with a number of police officers chasing after him.
One of the officers appears to fire a Taser at the fleeing man. He is not in the frame when he is stunned.
Assistant Commissioner Alan Clarke says police cannot elaborate on the details
while an internal investigation is underway, but people should not jump
to conclusions."Without referring to this specific incident I
think its very presumptuous for anyone to determine that a cause of
death is a Taser simply because it's occurred in an incident where a
Taser has been utilised," he said.Premier Barry O'Farrell will
not be drawn on specifics either, saying only that he believes stun guns
should remain an option for officers."It would be inappropriate
[to comment] given that this will be the subject of a coronial and
perhaps other investigations," he said.Police media spokesman Sergeant Dave Rose says officers need help from the public to identify the dead man.
"At this stage he's described only as being of medium build, about 178cm
tall, aged in his mid-twenties to mid-thirties," he said."He is
described as having brown eyes and brown shoulder-length curly hair. He
was wearing blue denim jeans and a white Gap brand short-sleeved shirt."There will be an autopsy on the man's body today.
David Shoebridge attacks police over Taser death
Civil rights groups say the incident shows that Tasers are not a safe substitute for lethal force.
While police say they will conduct a thorough investigation into the
incident, Greens state MP David Shoebridge says Taser use should be
suspended to allow for an urgent independent inquiry."We're seeing an increased use of Tasers here in New South Wales," he said.
"And it was really - with the number of Taser uses here that we've seen in
the last few years - almost inevitable that we will see more deaths
caused by police Taser use."Police say they prefer to have a Taser as an option because it is safer than a firearm.
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