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Taser purchased through grant aids Columbiana police

March 10, 2012
By KATIE SCHWENDEMAN - Staff Writer ( , Salem News

COLUMBIANA - A city police officer may have been spared a more serious injury during an assault last week if a Taser had not been used, Police Chief Tim Gladis said Tuesday.

The Taser used by Officer Mark Edwards at 22 E. Salem St. was purchased through a Columbiana Community Foundation grant.

Edwards used the Taser as a stun gun on a man at the home who reportedly knocked Officer Tab Bailey to the ground injuring his knee. The assault happened as Bailey and Edwards attempted to take him in custody for domestic violence.

Bailey was treated at Salem Hospital for the injury and released later that day.

"I read in the paper that an officer got hurt I am glad it wasn't worse," Council President Lowell Schloneger told Gladis during the Council meeting last week.

He thanked Gladis and Fire Chief Rick Garrity for securing grant funding for new technology for the departments.

The fire department was recently awarded two new thermal imagining cameras through a federal grant and the Community Foundation grant paid for five new complete Taser X2 units for the police department. The grant was awarded last year and was for $7,500.

"Keep after those grants. It is commendable we have two men working like this," Schloneger said.

Gladis said the department is "very fortunate" to have the Tasers.

"We are using this instance as an example. Without a Taser weapon we would have had to likely fight him to get him under control. People get hurt doing that. In this case we were able to put a rapid stop to it by using this tool," he said.

The Taser X2 units can shoot darts up to 25 feet and deliver 50,000 volts of electricity.

"(These) will drop a 1,500-pound steer in a New York Minute," he said. Although very powerful, the Tasers do not cause permanent injury when used properly.

He also said some of the department's officers even volunteered to be subject to a Taser deployment.

As for Bailey, he returned to work on Wednesday.



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