Police use of Tasers in England and Wales rises by 9%

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https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2017/apr/13/police-use-of-tasers-rises-england-and-wales

Travis, A (Thursday 13th April, 12:36 BST)

Police use of Tasers in England and Wales rises by 9%

Officers used stun guns on 11,294 occasions and fired them 1,755 times, in period when violent crime also rose

 

This headline is misleading because the first thing read is that the amount of Taser use has risen in the two countries but it doesn’t say the number of interactions they don’t use Tasers on so there is nothing to compare it to. Even though Tasers were used on 11,294 occasions, that is only 9% out of 125,485 occasions, so in comparison it isn’t as large a number as it first seems. Furthermore, the article goes on to specify that while Tasers are used on 9% more occasions, this is used as a threat with officers “aiming and activating the devices without actually firing them” and the number of times they were actually fired has only risen by 2%, a much smaller number than the headline originally states, with “83% of cases of Taser use last year were classed as non-discharge”. The headline implies that more people are being shot with the Tasers but it later says that the large majority of cases did not even have the weapon fired so this headline is extremely misleading. Though the figures were gained from the Home Office, so will be presented as raw figures, the article has presented them in a manipulative way that makes them seem more drastic then they really are.

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