Bloomington Police to carry tasers within the next month

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (IUSTV News) — At least 40 officers with the Bloomington Police Department could be equipped with tasers as early as next month.

Bloomington Mayor Kerry Thomson made the announcement during Wednesday’s city council meeting.

Last July, the Bloomington Board of Public Safety reviewed a pilot program proposal, which will give certain officers the necessary training to be equipped with and use tasers.

Thomson said the city has recently received the first shipment of the less-lethal weapon, and officers will begin training to carry the weapons full-time.

The department’s use of force policies have been updated to permit the use of tasers, which states that officers may use the weapons to subdue anyone forcibly resisting arrest, using force against an officer or other person, demonstrating imminent use of force against, or when an individual is harming themselves.

The department policy clearly states restrictions on when tasers are not allowed to be used.

Aside from being used to punish a person, electronic control weapons are not permitted on handcuffed individuals, people detained in police cars, anyone driving a vehicle, as well as anyone known to have a pacemaker or known to be pregnant.

Other law enforcement agencies in Monroe County currently equip officers with electronic control weapons. Bloomington Police officers currently have impact weapons, including batons and flashlight, which have their own training guidelines and restrictions.