Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Fla. student who was Tasered after questioning Kerry won't face criminal charges

From the AP this morning:

ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) — A University of Florida student who was shocked with a Taser after persistently questioning Sen. John Kerry won't face criminal charges and has apologized for his actions, his attorney said Tuesday.

Andrew Meyer, 21, yelled "Don't Tase me, bro!" as he scuffled with officers during the on-campus speech last month. In letters to the university, its president and the campus police department, he apologized, attorney Robert Griscti said.

"I made the decision to supersede the rules, and for that I apologize," Meyer wrote. "I should have acted calmer and obeyed the directives of the officers. If I had, none of the subsequent issues would ever have arisen."

Prosecutors had no immediate comment.

I'm sure they had no comment. After all, even though the police investigated themselves and found no wrongdoing (well there's a surprise!), it was clear to everyone who saw the video of the incident that the police reaction to Meyer's obnoxious behavior was heavy handed, at the very least. And it's not out of the question that he had a solid case for a lawsuit.

I hope the video of this incident is used in police training around the country. It's a perfect example of how ill-trained police can actually escalate a situation rather than diffuse it. Six burly police officers should not need to use a Taser on an unarmed (albeit obnoxious) college student. IMHO.

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