NRP brass in favour of allowing all police officers to carry tasers
Ontario's governing Liberals are going to allow all front line police officers to carry stun guns following the fatal shooting of a Toronto teenager last month.
Community Safety Minister Madeleine Meilleur says it will be up to local police forces to decide whether to equip their officers with the weapons, and it will be up to those forces to pay for them.
Niagara Regional Police Deputy Chief Joe Matthews joined the Larry Fedoruk show on 610 CKTB Tuesday afternoon and is in favour of all NRP Officers carrying stun guns.
Up until now, only supervising and specialized officers were allowed to carry stun guns, setting police in Ontario apart from counterparts in several other provinces along with the RCMP.
Police chiefs have been advocating for the expanded use of Tasers for years.
The issue has come under scrutiny after 18-year-old Sammy Yatim was shot multiple times and hit by a stun gun by police during a confrontation on an empty streetcar.
Videos of the incident sparked outrage and prompted hundreds of people to take to the streets in two separate marches to Toronto police headquarters.
The Special Investigations Unit has charged Toronto police Const. James Forcillo with second-degree murder.
In the wake of Yatim's death, the Liberals said they would review officer training, equipment and how use of force incidents are reported.
Ontario's ombudsman has launched his own investigation into the Yatim shooting, probing what kind of direction the provincial government provides to police for defusing conflict situations.
Retired justice Dennis O'Connor has been asked by Toronto police chief Bill Blair to lead a separate review of police procedures, use of force and police response to emotionally disturbed people.