May 9, 2008
The Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP), who have been embroiled in other sometimes lethal controversies regarding the use of tasers, last weekend subdued an 82-year-old bedridden man, Frank Lasser, by tasering him at the Royal Inland Hospital in Kamloops, BC. Lasser, who’s had heart bypass surgery and must use oxygen at all times, was hospitalized with pneumonia. In a CBC interview, Lasser said that he can become delusional when not breathing properly. Hospital nurses called the RCMP after a delirious Lasser displayed a knife. Lasser doesn’t know why he wouldn’t relinquish his knife, even after the RCMP arrived.
The ex-prison guard believes that the three Mounties in his room could have subdued him without using a stun gun on his torso three times. Lasser commented: “They could have gone in there and taken an old man without any trouble at all.” Recounting the stun gun use, Lasser said: “I was laying on the bed by then and the corporal came in, or the sergeant, I forget which it was, and said to the guys, ‘OK, get him because we got more important work to do on the street tonight.’ And then, bang, bang, bang, three times with the taser and, I tell you, I never want that again.”
On Thursday, after the incident was reported, Kamloops RCMP Cpl. Scott Wilson
sent up a trial balloon declared that the Mounties had no choice but to taser the elderly patient. “Whether the person is 80 or 20, we are dealing with a person who had a deadly weapon in their hand,” he said. Scott added that pepper spray couldn’t be used because it would “potentially contaminate the entire hospital.” Excuse me? Mr. Lasser was in _one_ room, which we can only presume had a door which could be closed.
We hereby nominate the RCMP for our difficult-to-obtain Dodo Award. One of a very few previous winners was John Mark Karr’s fiancee, Brooke Simmons of Louisiana, who outdid all previous competition by getting engaged to publicity whore John Mark Karr, 42, whom we all recall as that strange man who claimed to have been with child beauty queen JonBenét Ramsey when she was murdered. But we believe that the Mounties contribution to elder care may have topped Brooke’s herculean efforts.
There was a bumper crop of Dodo Award contenders this week. Others in the running included:
The London, Ontario Tim Horton’s managers who fired single working mother Nicole Lilliman, 27, for handing out a doughnut hole-sized bit of fried dough known as a “Timbit,” which retails for $0.16 CAD, to the crying toddler of a regular customer. After receiving much more than $0.16 worth of negative publicity, the Tim Horton’s fast-food chain relented, rehired Lilliman and plans to rewrite its policies regarding the distribution of free Timbits. This should provide at least a year’s employment for a lackey.
Two San Diego State University students who were among dozens arrested this week in “Operation Sudden Fall,” a drug bust in which two kilograms of cocaine were seized along with ecstasy, hash oil, marijuana, methamphetamine, prescription drugs, psychedelic mushrooms, guns and at least $60,000 in cash. One of the two scholars was to receive a master’s degree in…homeland security, while the other was just about to earn a degree in criminal justice. Ralph Partridge, special agent in charge of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration in San Diego, said that “a sad commentary is that when one of these individuals was arrested, they inquired as [to] whether or not his arrest and incarceration would have an effect on him becoming a federal law enforcement officer.”
Read about lipstick-sized stun guns which come in a variety of delightful colors for the well-dressed woman.
Photo credit: CBC News
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