Friday, February 22, 2008

Another Post-Tasing Death

I'm running of titles for posts about people dying after taser use.

A CA man dies hours after being tased:
A Frazier Park man who was Tasered by Sheriff's deputies Tuesday night has died in Kern Medical Center.

The cause of death for 41-year-old Garrett Farn was not immediately known, according to the Kern County Coroner's Office.

The Sheriff's Department said deputies were dispatched to Coco's Motel on Mount Pinos Way in Frazier Park at about 8:21 p.m. Tuesday. A caller reported a naked man was knocking on motel doors and trying to force his way into rooms, the department said. Deputies said it was quite cold in the mountain community at the time.

When deputies tried to detain Farn, he resisted, according to the department. That's when a deputy used a Taser gun to give Farn a jolt of electricity and subdue him, according to a Sheriff's report.

The department said Farn was handcuffed at placed in a patrol car. He kicked out the vehicle's window. He was taken to Kern Medical Center for an examination, the department said. At the hospital, he had to be restrained by officers and staff, deputies said.

He was admitted to the hospital for observation, and on Wednesday morning at 4:41 a.m., the hospital notified the sheriff's department that Farn's condition had deterioriated and he was in critical condition.

The cause of death is pending toxicology reports.

I'm guessing that taser use won't be implicated in the cause of death. When a medical examiner suggests that the cause of death might be taser related, they do so in the face of possible repercussions from the law enforcement agency signing their paycheck as well as an aggressive PR and legal campaign by Taser International (I wrote a little about that in the beginning of the month.).

To cut through all of that, here's a simple question: "Would Garret Fann be alive if a taser had not been used?" You don't get to talk about guns in your answer; shooting someone for running around naked or for resisting arrest isn't standard protocol.

PostBlog: I didn't notice this until after I had completed this post. I don't think I'll be believing much coming out of the Kern County Coroner's Office. Their sheriff is their coroner!