Panama City’s new Police Chief John Van Etten has decided to arm some of his officers with tasers.
The department has been looking at adding the electronic shock devices for several years.
The chief says seven patrol sergeants will be the only Panama City officers carrying the new devices, which have just arrived at the department.
Chief Van Etten is very aware of reports you hear in the media about children being tased or people dying from heart attacks. He says what you don’t hear are the hundreds of cases where the tasers keep suspects and officers from being injured or killed.
He says officer training with the weapon is key to the project being successful, and he promises the best training available on the tasers for his men and women.
Just last year alone, 38 Panama City policemen suffered injuries in the line of duty.