The Corner

Law & the Courts

How Does a Cop Confuse a Taser with a Gun?

(welcomia/Getty Images)

How is it possible for a trained cop to confuse a taser with an actual gun?

That’s a question we’ll probably be asking each other a lot in the months to come.

I must admit, when I first heard that the chief of the Brooklyn Center Police Department concluded that the police officer who fatally shot Daunte Wright did so by accidentally firing a gun instead of a taser, it seemed far fetched. But the video does back up that claim.

Not only does an officer scream “I’ll tase you” and “Taser! Taser! Taser!” before firing a shot, but after the shooting, says, “Oh s**t, I just shot him.”

So that strongly supports the conclusion of the police chief.

However, what’s especially weird is that in the video, one can see the officer pointing what is clearly a gun rather than a Taser at Wright. So it wasn’t the type of situation where the weapon was grabbed and fired in a split second. There was eight seconds in the video between the first “I’ll tase you” and the “Oh s**t, I just shot him.” Even in the heat of the moment, eight seconds would seem to be enough time to realize the mistake.

So that brings us back to the original question. How is it possible for a trained cop to confuse a Taser with an actual gun?


The Latest