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Stun guns potentially fatal, study finds

ABC Australia | April 18 2005

Taser stun guns could be fatal, according to a study conducted by Melbourne's Alfred Hospital.

Victoria Police commissioned the safety report into the controversial stun guns in 2004.

A copy of the confidential study has appeared on the website of the weapon's US manufacturer.

The report concludes the devices present an acceptable risk when used by trained law enforcement officers in accordance with the manufacturer's directions.

However, the study includes an assessment by Alfred Hospital cardiologist Archer Broughton, who says the guns do pose immediate risks and potentially fatal dangers.

The dangers include injuries caused by the stunned person falling over, injuries from the electrical barbs fired into the offender and possible disruptions to heart pacemakers.

Victoria approved the weapons for police use last year.