160 more police to get Tasers in Sussex
A FURTHER 160 police officers will be armed with Tasers across Sussex, it has been revealed.
Currently only Sussex Police firearms officers use the stun guns, but response teams will use them from October.
Chief Superintendent Paul Morrison, head of operations for Sussex Police, said the roll-out to 160 extra officers from response and support teams represented about 6 per cent of the total workforce.
He said: "Sussex Police was one of the small number of forces that have previously restricted the use of Tasers to specialist firearms officers. Experience, both locally and nationally, has shown that it can act as a deterrent to the escalation of violence."
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But Crowborough Lib Dem town councillor David Shaw, from Hydehurst Close, posted concerns on Twitter following the announcement.
He said: "This is electrifying news, I think there are many ethical concerns with their use. But I would be surprised if the 6 per cent of Sussex Police getting Tasers are going to include Crowborough."
District councillor Steven Isted, who used to be a chief inspector special constable in Uckfield, welcomed the plan.
He said: "I think it's good the police have a piece of equipment available to use in all situations, especially in rural areas, as it could be a long time before an armed response unit arrives."
He added: "I believe anything that makes the police and the public safer has to be a good thing."