After initially denying that anyone was hit with a Taser during campus protests on March 4, the California Highway Patrol changed its story in response to a California Aggie investigation published yesterday.
The statement by CHP Officer Marvin Williford said that upon further review of the data, it was clear that one Taser was successfully discharged in drive stun mode before it malfunctioned.
“The first use of the Taser was successful as the protestors pushed through a police skirmish line but that was the only time that weapon cycled successfully,” Williford said in the statement that was emailed to The Aggie on Friday afternoon. “The use of the Taser was recorded on the official report of the incident but the initial deployment was not brought to the attention of CHP media personnel until later.”
A review of the data from all other Tasers carried by officers responding to the March 4 protests at UC Davis showed that no other Tasers were cycled, he said.
Williford reiterated that the deployment of Tasers was an appropriate response to the protestors’ use of bicycles as a moving barricade. He also restated that the CHP response was a reasonable effort to protect the safety of both the group of protestors and motorists on Interstate 80.
View The Aggie’s investigation: Police action at campus protest provokes student criticism