Officers in a Tennessee jail repeatedly pressed a Taser to an 18-year-old’s flesh and pulled the trigger at least four times, as, for nearly a full minute total, he writhed in agony — completely immobile in leg, arm, and head restraints attached to a restrictive chair — and ‘wanting to die’; yet the torturers-in-uniform did nothing but laugh.
“I’ll keep on doing that until I run out of batteries,” one sadistic cop coolly told the teen, as overheard in video of the abuse.
Cruelly muscled into further compliance in the restraint chair, the young man endured the Taser “four times totaling approximately fifty seconds on his stomach and legs” — his face, seen in video footage, an unhealthy reddish-purple, jaw clenched, in obvious distress.
With some 40 burns and nagging mental trauma from use of the ostensively not-as lethal weapon, the teen has now filed a lawsuit in U.S. District Court against three Cheatham County Corrections Deputies alleging excessive force, failure of officers to protect, and violation of constitutional rights. According to the suit, the unnamed officer using the Taser acted “sadistic and malicious nature,” with “unreasonable” force.
Authorities brought Jordan Elias Norris, now 19, to the Cheatham County Jail in November 2016, after an arrest for various drugs and weapons charges, the Tennessean reports, including, “felony manufacturing/possession of marijuana for resale, possession of drug paraphernalia, theft under $500, five counts of possession of a prohibited weapon […]
“Norris was originally suspected of stealing a semi-automatic rifle and Sheriff’s deputies received information he was going to use the weapon on any law enforcement who tried to arrest him, according to Sheriff Mike Breedlove.”
Persistently combative and failing to comply with jailers’ orders, Norris landed the punishment of a restraint chair — but, for the teen, the already-dubious device came with the added bonus of multiple electric shocks from a Taser, as uniformed thugs clamped down on his arms and chin to ensure almost no movement from the jolts.
All three officers participating — two holding Norris down and one delivering the shocks — have been suspended pending the outcome of an internal investigation.
“As Sheriff, I want our citizens to know that any inappropriate behavior that may have violated an individual’s rights will not be tolerated,” Breedlove announced.
“I have placed the employees involved on administrative leave while the investigation is conducted. We will work closely and cooperatively with the TBI and District Attorney’s Office to ensure all facts are provided and all angles of this incident are thoroughly investigated.”
Tasers, which deliver an electric shock, can inflict permanent, severe damage — sometimes, resulting in death — ostensively serve as an officer’s go-to option to employ force, as its fatality-to-use ratio compared to a service firearm is considered a minimal risk. Indeed, an oft-repeated question following contentious officer-involved shootings is why guns are so frequently chosen by officers when a Taser or other less lethal option would have sufficed.
But the deputies at the center of Norris’ lawsuit, while yet to be found guilty of any wrongdoing, appear to find obscene pleasure in tasering for a durations far longer than might be considered safe — not to mention, ethical or humane. Remember, Norris’ primary offense pertained to illicit substances — even his weapons charge, admittedly a theft, stemmed from cannabis prohibition, a business which would otherwise comprise voluntary transactions between individuals.
Thus, before victim-blaming or rationalizing officers’ errant behavior in this instance, consider the arbitrariness of Norris’ situation — an otherwise nonviolent cannabis cultivator living in the wrong state in arguably the wrong nation — and how facilely you or a loved one could find themselves under the equal-opportunity brutalizer familiar as our mushrooming Police State.
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Contributed by Claire Bernish of The Daily Sheeple.