July 22, 2011

Taser Lawsuit: Jury Awards $10 Million to Family of Darryl Turner (Charlotte NC)

The shocking taser-killing of 17-year old Darryl Turner by a Charlotte-Mecklenburg police officer was one of the early cases of its kind covered by this blog. We've spent a lot of time covering taser-deaths since then ... but, Turner's case was particularly appalling. A young, vibrant teenager killed because a police officer thought it was a good idea to pump his body with 50,000 volts of electricity for 37 seconds.

The city of Charlotte knew it was wrong. That is why they settled with the family for over $600,000.

However, Taser International continued to hide behind its junk-science of 'excited delirium syndrome'. A federal jury decided it was time to put Taser International in its place. The jury ordered Taser International Inc. to pay $10 million to the family of the 17-year-old teenager who was killed in March 2008 at a Food Lion in northeast Charlotte

Police at the time said the officer violated policy when he shocked Darryl Turner for about 37 seconds (see store surveillance video), contributing to the teen's death. Turner fell to the floor during the confrontation and died.

The jury returned its verdict Tuesday in U.S. District Court for the Western District of North Carolina.  Lawyers for Turner's family persuaded jurors that the manufacturer knew the product could cause heart problems if it struck near the heart but failed to warn customers.

Good for them!

There have been hundreds of these taser-related killings in America over the past few years. I hope that we begin to see many more of these successful lawsuits brought against the manufacturer of these taser death-ray guns!

Our prayers remain with the family of Darryl Turner. The money won't bring Darryl back ... but, it does provide some measure of justice against the people who took him away in the first place.


Eddie G. Griffin said...

Praise the Lord! TASER International finally got shocked with its own medicine.

Braille Seven said...

Justice served...not really justice but it is artificial compensation.
You can't replace precious life or apologize. So sad.

Todd Freeman said...

If taser is a defensive weapon then why there's a worst past using that? Heart failures and other disorders may encounter we you got shot with it.

Taser @worldclassselfdefense.com

Unknown said...

Todd - I understand that the taser may exacerbate existing medical issues that a person being electrocuted already has ... but, sheesh, over 500 people have died subsequent to being shot with a taser. That is about once per week for the past few years ... isn't that a bit much?

Unknown said...

All - Appeals court upholds the ruling. The award is reduced, but, Taser International is still guilty as charged!

See video report...

Unknown said...

Very sad to see that the court system has reversed their decision on the financial award to the family. A new trial for damages has been called.