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“A lot more women are going to be arresting men and it levels us up" says Surrey Sergeant about tasers

4 minute read
“A lot more women are going to be arresting men and it levels us up" says Surrey Sergeant about tasers

Published by Local Democracy Reporter Rebecca Curley at 5:47pm 31st March 2020. (Updated at 5:51pm 31st March 2020)

A Woking Police Sergeant has welcomed the chance for more Tasers for Surrey Police because of the added protection it gives to women. 

Sgt Tyne Rapley was over a foot shorter than the man she used her Taser on. 

She found her self confronting him in a kitchen where he allegedly went to grab a knife and lunge at her: 

“It equals out the playing field.

“A lot more women are going to be arresting men and it levels us up.”

Sgt Rapley says it provides an extra comfort of protection for officers and this is why it will help female colleagues. 

She was five foot two and the man she was confronting was around six foot three, she recalls.

Sgt Rapley adds:

“If I was in a massive hall and he was one end and I was the other I might have tried something else.

"But I was in a closer proximity.

“So we know when and where to use it. The more we are on jobs the more we become comfortable.”

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

Surrey Police is to be given around 250 extra Tasers after nearly half a million pounds was given to Surrey and Sussex Police and Crime Commissioners for the firearms.

It is hoped around 80 per cent of Surrey officers trained to carry them will soon have one. 

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

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

“It’s really effective. 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 seeing the light go on as people realise and rather than ramping up a situation it can calm it down.

“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 then receive a minimum of six hours per year. 

She welcomed the chance for more officers to have one:

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

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

Chief Inspector Simon Starns said:

“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.”

The man mentioned in Sgt Rapley’s account has been arrested and the police are awaiting a response from Crown Prosecution Service as to what will happen next.