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Last Updated: Wednesday, 18 May, 2005, 18:13 GMT 19:13 UK
Stunning stunt for police charity
Det Con Joe Holness is shot with a Taser stun gun
Det Con Holness fell to his knees after being shot with the Taser gun
The 50,000 volt power of police Taser stun guns has been demonstrated by a Kent officer who agreed to be stunned by one of the guns for charity.

Det Con Joe Holness agreed to act as a guinea pig in a demonstration of the device at the Police Federation's annual conference on Wednesday.

His stunt raised more than 1,000 for October's National Police Memorial Day, which Det Con Holness founded himself.

The conference voted 95% in favour of all officers being armed with the guns.

At present only authorised firearms officers are allowed to use the Taser guns as an alternative to conventional guns.

'Safe equipment'

The delegates voted that all operational officers should be allowed to carry them and Home Secretary Charles Clarke told the conference it would be a "major step" for that to happen.

Det Con Holness winced and fell to his knees after being shot by the gun in the sponsored controlled test.

He said: "It is a safe piece of equipment that could benefit officer safety - this is all in a good cause."

British firearms officer in a demonstration of the taser gun
Amnesty International wants use of the guns in the UK controlled

The 40-year-old campaigned for National Police Memorial Day after a speeding car killed his colleague Pc Jon Odell in Margate in December 2000.

The first event remembering officers killed in the line of duty was held at St Paul's Cathedral last year and a memorial service will take place in a different location every October.

Human rights charity Amnesty International has called for the use of Taser guns to be tightly controlled among UK police after a report showed 74 people had died from their use in North America.

The guns, manufactured in the US, fire needle-tipped darts up to 21ft (6.4m) to deliver a 50,000 volt.

How the stun gun works
01 Aug 01 |  UK News

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