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Ask A Cop- Stun Gun Ordinance clarified January 4, 2010

Posted by southbendpolice in Ask A Cop.
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EDITORS NOTE: This is the first SBPD Ask A Cop post of 2010 and I mentioned a few days ago as the SBPD Blog attempts to go daily, I will have more time to answer a few more questions along with our news relases and features. As such, you will be seeing more questions answered more frequently!

Q: I am confused about the legality of stun guns within South Bend city limits. According to your “Ask A Cop” blog, any and all stun guns are illegal within South Bend, yet when I checked the ordinance cited in the response, it stated that all weapons which have a ” ‘charge that equals or does not exceed the equivalency of a five (5) milliamp sixty (60) hertz’ shall not be subject to these provisions and shall be governed by applicable state law.”

Exactly which state laws is the ordinance referring to? I went to in.gov, but was unable to find any state legislation concerning stun guns.

A: The IN.gov website does have this information. IC 35-47-8 covers the Regulation of Electronic Stun Weapons, Tasers, and Stun Guns by state statute. You can see it here.

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Quick 3: Ask A Cop.. End of 2009! December 28, 2009

Posted by southbendpolice in Ask A Cop.
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Q: My husband is a Master Taser instructor and wants to purchase a C2 personal taser for me to carry for protection. We have recently heard that if you live in the city of South Bend that you cannot carry a personal taser. Is this true?

A: Correct. Possession of Stun Guns or Tasers is prohibited within South Bend City limits by city ordinance 14-36, which prohibits possession or ownership of ANY type of stun gun by any person, form or entity. Possession offense fines start at $250.00 for each offense/possession count, and will also result in permanent confiscation of the stun gun.

Q: How does an attorney obtain a recording of a 911 call and dispatch from police records? Phone number or address to place request.

A: Requests for public records re handled by the City’s Legal Department, which performs legal services for the City. The Department does not provide legal advice to members of the public. To request public records, you must fill out an Access to Public Records Request form. The request will be sent to the Legal Department to determine if the records requested are discloseable. Not all requests can be granted, some information is not discloseable under law. More info at our Records page.

Q: I live outside of the city, however can I report a drug dealer now (my husband), even though it was 15 years ago that he was the supplier to a local housing project there in South Bend?

A: This type of offense would by outside of the Statute of Limitations, therefore no action can be taken about this type of offense given the time lapse involved.

Don’t Tase Me, Bro October 1, 2009

Posted by southbendpolice in In The News, Street Beat.
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WSBT.com posted a story about an accidental Tasering that happened next door in Mishawaka while apprehending a suspect, and one of the arresting officers was struck by one of the dart probes in the process. All officers including us, are required to feel the effects of being “Tased” during the initial training and certification process.

Being Tased is uncomfortable to be sure. But they also work very effectively in interrupting motor function, allowing officers to more safely make an apprehension. Over the years since 2003 when I have been carrying the Taser, I have found that the direct hit is “the worst” for discomfort, but it IS only temporary. I have also learned that you can complete the circuit in a number of other accidental ways, reminding you that electricity is your friend and needs to be respected.

Like:
-running through your own dangling Taser wires during a foot chase
-feeling a water puddle act in completing the circuit between you and your suspect
-having a vehicle complete the circuit around the subject seated inside, and
-completing that circuit while placing the cuffs on by grabbing on to your suspect with both hands

Those accidental ones make you remember to be mindful of the Taser, even if self deprecating in the process. The pain from the Taser is temporary. The comments from your coworkers effects are usually longer lasting.

Thanks for reading!
-Ed