Thursday, May 1, 2014

J.Post May 1: Double Standard in Taser Torture?


taser israel police boaz albert
Sir, - I must confess that reading on Holocaust Remembrance Day the account of contemporary sadism by a patrol policeman who tortured a suspect with the use of a Taser gun disturbed me beyond revulsion. My vexation was seriously compounded by the fact that the suspect was handcuffed and completely helpless at the time, that the shooting to the back of his head was without any provocation, that it was followed by three more shots after he fell to the ground, then nine more during the drive to the police station as the policeman cursed at him. 

The officer was sentenced to 28 months in prison by the Tel Aviv District Court after being charged with two counts of torturing a helpless person with a Taser gun and on one count of causing serious bodily harm. Judge Zvi Gurfinkel said that the law regarding "use of a taser is the same as for use of a gun." To a layman like myself, it seems that when unprovoked sadism is employed in the torture of a helpless human being, a more appropriate and just sentence demands a much lengthier prison term!

At the end of the same report we are told about the case of Boaz Albert from Yitzhar, Samaria, in which police delivered electric shocks to his chest as he lay helpless on the ground. This action was caught on video and established that Albert was not resisting arrest when the Taser gun was used on him. In Albert's case, however, the Police Investigation Department closed their investigation, finding the Taser use justified under the circumstances. Because Albert was from Yitzhar in Samaria? Is the justice system merely perverted, or corrupt as well?

ZEV CHAMUDOT
Petach Tikva

[Image credit: Wikimedia user Rama]