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Police Sergeant Welcomes Issue of More ‘Deterrent’ Tasers For Surrey Police

Published on: 2 Apr, 2020
Updated on: 3 Apr, 2020

Sgt Tyne Rapley of Surrey Police. Photo Surrey Police.

Police Sergeant Tyne Rapley has welcomed more Tasers for the Surrey force because of the added protection for women officers. 

She had to use hers on a man more than a foot taller she said had confronted her in a kitchen and allegedly went to grab a knife and lunge at her.

“It equals out the playing field,” Sgt Rapley said. “A lot more women are going to be arresting men and it levels us up.”

Sgt Rapley said the Taser provides an extra comfort of protection for officers. She is 5ft2ins and the man she was confronting was about 6ft3ins, she said.

“If I was in a massive hall and he was one end and I was the other I might have tried something else,” she added. “But I was in close proximity. So we know when and where to use it. The more we are on jobs, the more we become comfortable.”

The accused man was arrested and the case is still with the Crown Prosecution Service.

Surrey Police are to be given about 250 extra Tasers after nearly £500,000 was given to Surrey and Sussex Police and Crime Commissioners for the arms. About 80 per cent of Surrey officers trained to carry them are expected to wear them.

A Taser is a less-lethal single-shot weapon designed to temporarily incapacitate an individual through an electrical current.

Sgt Rapley, from Woking Neighbourhood Policing Team, said they also act as a deterrent helping to calm a situation.

“It’s really effective,” she added. “The fact that people can see we have them, then that is a warning. That’s a good deterrent.

“Seeing it on someone’s belt and people seeing the light go on, rather than ramping up a situation it can calm it. Just drawing it can be the thing we need to stop the situation.”

Officers undergo a minimum of 18 hours of training before they can carry a Taser and continue at least six more training hours every year.

“I think it’s a massive deal,” Sgt Rapley went on. “It wasn’t that very long ago that people thought it was a real lethal weapon.”

PCC David Munro

David Munro, the Surrey Police and Crime Commissioner, said the extra funding will help to better protect officers.

Chief Inspector Simon Starns added: “We welcome the additional funding for Tasers. Increasing the number of non-firearms officers carrying Tasers across the county is critical to keeping our officers, suspects and members of the public safe.

“Our Taser training for staff is some of the most comprehensive in the country but we are not complacent. Each incident where a Taser is drawn or used is reviewed by a senior officer and we monitor any developing trends in Taser usage.”

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Responses to Police Sergeant Welcomes Issue of More ‘Deterrent’ Tasers For Surrey Police

  1. Jim Allen Reply

    April 2, 2020 at 1:02 pm

    Perhaps there was a reason in the past for height requirements and, dare I say it, predominance of men male requirement within the police force because size matters.

    I am concerned that Tasers are not as safe as claimed. Any electrical shock is dangerous and there are numerous cases of problems with their use.

    I say, better a pair of cuffs than an electric shock.

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