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Last Updated: Monday, 28 November 2005, 21:30 GMT
Stun guns now in police armoury
An officer holds out a Taser, ready to fire
Two probes trailing a copper wire deliver a shock to incapacitate
Controversial Taser stun guns are to be available to specially-trained officers in the Cambs force for the first time.

The electrical device, delivers a five-second shock, is designed to incapacitate rather than injure.

Nitrogen cartridges fire two barbs, trailing copper cable back to the weapon, which stun on contact.

Acting Assistant Chief Constable Mark Hopkins said they would be used only when officers faced a threat from weapons or violence.

Safety concerns

The Tasers are to be demonstrated at Hinchingbrooke police headquarters on Tuesday afternoon.

Critics have raised safety concerns about the guns which can send 50,000 volts of electricity through the body.

The electricity causes temporary incapacity but some critics believe they can be lethal.

The makers and the police insist the weapons only give a low level electric shock, which does not have any long-term health implications.

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