Brentwood police now using Tasers as first line of defense

Photo: WKRN
Photo: WKRN

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. (WKRN) – Brentwood police will soon have a new first line of defense after the department purchases more than five dozen Tasers.

All officers will soon begin using the less lethal weapon and are undergoing training.

According to a press release, the Tasers are designed to propel small barbs attached to wires into a person that will temporarily incapacitate their movement.

“We believe this weapon will ultimately serve as a viable less lethal option that will allow officers to neutralize a threat while reducing the risk of serious injury to officers and subjects alike,” explained Police Chief Jeff Hughes.

Photo: WKRN
Photo: WKRN

While getting shot with a Taser is painful, the effects only last for the duration of the deployment, which is typically five seconds.

“We have to evolve with what’s going on in the world, and unfortunately, there’s been more and more encounters with police and suspects,” Officer Bill Reape said. “We’re doing everything we can to minimize those injuries, not only to use, but the subjects.”

Officers are not required as part of their eight-hour training to be shot with a Taser, but several have voluntarily agreed to be shot in the classroom setting so they have a better understanding of what effect the weapon will have on a person if they have to use it.

Each weapon costs $1,285 and comes with batteries, cartridges and holsters.

“The shelf life is approximately five years,” Officer Reape said. “We at the City of Brentwood are fortunate enough to have opted into a maintenance agreement with Taser, so we incrementally pay each year, so at the end of five years we’ll be presented with brand new Tasers and equipment.”

Several police agencies across the state of Tennessee already use Tasers.