‘Never had to fire it’: Antwerp police use taser for the first time
Monday, 28 September 2020
Credit: Antwerp police
The rapid response team of the Antwerp police force had to use an electric shock weapon, also known as a taser, for the first time during an arrest following a car chase last weekend.
The arrest unit of the Antwerp police force has had the weapon for two years, but has never had to use it until last Sunday, it announced.
During a car chase that started in the Netherlands but quickly continued on Antwerp territory, Antwerp’s rapid response team joined the chase and managed to stop the car on the E313 motorway bridge above the Rivierenhof.
The driver threatened the police with a metal rod and then walked away towards the playground in the Rivierenhof, when the police decided to use the taser to stop the man with as little violence as possible.
“There was a risk that other people would be in danger if we used our firearm,” Wouter Bruyns of the police said on VRT radio. “The electric shock weapon enabled us to arrest the suspect safely.”
This is the first time the police have had to use the electric shock weapon. “We have used it as a deterrent in the past, but have never had to actually fire it,” Bruyns said.