Tasers to be issued to every frontline officer in forces response to

Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily  Front Page newsletter and new  audio briefings. It will take 18 months to train and equip the officers and cost around £220,000. In a tweet, Mr Adderley said risks to officers had “changed dramatically”, adding: “Our officers have a right to feel safe, supported and adequately equipped to tackle this sickening trend.”The announcement follows the death of Pc Andrew Harper in Berkshire last week as he responded to reports of a burglary, the latest incident where an officer has been harmed while on duty.Earlier this month, Pc Stuart Outten was attacked with a machete in Leyton, east London, and used a Taser despite being stabbed in the head, while West Midlands Police Pc Gareth Phillips was run over with his patrol car in Birmingham.Issuing Tasers is a matter for each individual police force, but Police Federation of England and Wales national chairman John Apter said: “We should ensure every officer who wants to carry a Taser can do so. Officer safety should never come second to balancing the books.”Kent is spending almost £1 million to increase its Taser-trained officer force from 330 to 1,500. Any of its frontline officers likely to face violence will be able to be trained in their use.The Metropolitan Police is increasing its Taser-trained officers by 75 per cent to 6,830 by next March, West Midlands is going from 600 to 1,440 and Greater Manchester is doubling its force to 1,100 of its 6,300 front-line officers. Tasers will be issued to every frontline officer in a police force in response to a “sickening trend” of attacks on the emergency services.Northamptonshire Police Chief Constable Nick Adderley, who served in the Royal Navy before joining the police, said the weapons would be issued to all officers who want one.His is one of at least seven forces who have seven of the 43 forces in England and Wales including Surrey and Devon and Cornwall who are introducing Tasers for all their frontline officers who want them – as revealed by The Daily Telegraph last month.Mr Adderley said: “I can’t sit here and preside over a situation where my officers are exposed to increasing levels of violence when at my disposal is equipment that could save an officer’s life.”There are people out there who are prepared to seriously injure, or worse. We haven’t moved with the times and we have to move with the times to combat the threat we are facing daily from those who simply have no respect for law and order.”Mr Adderley has previously called for Tasers to be standard issue within three years, but said he was “not prepared to wait” and that Northamptonshire Police and Crime Commissioner Stephen Mold was “fully supportive”. The force has just over 1,000 frontline officers. Police are also deploying a more powerful version of the Taser, the X2, which can disable two suspects at once with two 50,000 volt shots without having to be reloaded. It also has greater velocity to penetrate thick clothing. A third generation Taser is about to be evaluated by police.A review of the police’s frontline workforce by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) for the Home Office found that officers felt more or all of the “should be issued with Tasers, especially when single crewing.” Other methods of restraint such as incapacitant spray were felt to be less effective while police chiefs argued that it could defuse violent situations, often without being fired.

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