Nelson police officers only regained access to the Taser this past April.

Nelson police chief says Taser incident shows value of tool

Nelson’s police chief is relieved a Taser was available last weekend as police used it to gain control of an agitated man.

Nelson’s police chief is relieved the Taser was available last weekend as police used it to gain control of an agitated man intent on injuring himself.

“In this instance, thank goodness we did have it available to the officer who responded. Things could have turned much more ugly, much more quickly had that less-than-lethal option not been available,” Chief Wayne Holland told the Star.

On Sunday, the Nelson Police Department responded to a call about a man who’d stabbed himself with a knife and fled his place of work.

“We had a young man who was unfortunately… very upset and suicidal,” said Holland.

“He had a large and very sharp knife with which he was self mutilating and he was also making statements he intended to kill himself.”

When police found the male sitting on a curb in Fairview, he was approached with caution. Initially he was calm but became agitated, combative and punched the NPD member twice in the face according to a release issued by the department.

The officer attempted restrain the man using physical force, but because the person still had a knife and was continuing his agitated behaviour, the Taser was used.

“The officer did as he was trained and used something that was less-than-lethal force,” said Holland.

With one use of the Taser, the man was unable to use his muscles to resist and was easily handcuffed by police.

The man was taken to Kootenay Lake Hospital immediately by EHS and examined by a doctor. No injuries from the Taser were received and the man was treated for the self-inflicted stab wounds as well as mental health issues.

“It may not have been the case if they’d continued to do battle. Everything worked well,” said Holland. “We are very happy we had the Taser available to our member that day.”

This was the first time officers in Nelson deployed the conducted energy weapon since they were reinstated for use in the city this April.

Holland says all officers are reluctant to use force of any kind.

“Obviously the officer was distressed he had to use any force at all, but later commented thank goodness he had the Taser on him because who knows what would have happened if the person continued to fight,” Holland relayed.

The incident was reported to the Independent Investigation office and the Police Complaints Commissioner. At this time, there is no reason for them to “assert their jurisdiction,” said Holland.

Just Posted

Pedestrian killed on Highway 22 Saturday evening

Police say 51-year-old man died after being hit by car

Nelson Leafs overcome injuries to beat Fernie 3-1

Hunter Young made 26 saves in net for the Leafs

Nelson Boxing Club sweeps fights in Idaho

Caeden Rennie, Marino Raffo, Stryder Sutton and Max Berkeley each won

School District 8 swears in new board

Four new trustees join the Kootenay Lake board of education

LVR Bombers finish 12th at field hockey provincials

The Bombers salvaged the tournament with a late win in the quarter-finals

REPLAY: B.C’s best video this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week across the province

B.C. asking for tips on ‘dirty money’ in horse racing, real estate, luxury cars

Action follows a Peter German report on money laundering in B.C. casinos

Canadian dead more than a week after plane crash in Guyana: Global Affairs

Global Affairs said it couldn’t provide further details on the identity of the Canadian citizen

Children between 6 and 9 eligible for $1,200 RESP grant from province

BC Ministry of Education is reminding residents to apply before the deadline

Victoria spent $30,000 to remove John A. Macdonald statue

Contentious decision sparked controversy, apology from mayor

Privacy concerns over credit card use for legal online pot purchases

Worries follow privacy breaches at some Canadian cannabis retailers

NEB approves operating pressure increase to repaired Enbridge pipeline

The pipeline burst outside of Prince George on Oct. 9, now operating at 85 per cent

B.C. VIEWS: Setting speed limits in a post-fact political environment

Media prefer ‘speed kills’ narrative, even when it fails to appear

Controversy erupts over Japanese flag in B.C. classroom (updated)

Online petition demanding removal has collected more than 5,700 signatures

Most Read