I have immense respect for the police. They risk life and limb every day. And in doing so, they come in contact with crackheads and other troubled humans who, in the blink of an eye, can end a career or a life.
Sometimes, the folks they try to save from themselves end up dying in the process. And sometimes officers get sued.
This is one such case. If the world has any justice, the jury will take one look at this lawsuit and laugh it out of court.
Taser lawsuit wrong on all levelsYour turn: Does this case have a prayer? Should it have been allowed to proceed at all?
Published Saturday, March 4, 2006
The London Free Press
I’ve heard of frivolous lawsuits, but this one should win some sort of prize. Many of us have heard the story of Peter LaMonday, a drug addict who died in May 2004 after police subdued him with a taser gun. It took seven officers responding to reports of a man breaking a window on Hamilton Road to take LaMonday, who was high on crack cocaine, into custody.
The cause of death was cited as “a cocaine-induced excited delirium while in a prone position.”
The province’s Special Investigations Unit subsequently cleared all officers. A coroner’s inquest led to new protocols for taser use.
Now his widow is suing the cops and the London Health Sciences Centre for $2.8 million, alleging negligence in the investigation, arrest and care.
This appears to be little more than a blatant play for cash from taxpayers’ pockets. Worse, it masks the larger-scale issue: Drug addiction is a tragedy that continues to eat its way into the core of society.
I feel sorry for LaMonday’s widow, but a lawsuit against those who dedicate their lives to fight this scourge is just plain wrong.