Vidalia PD officers undergo Taser training, by being shot with one

VIDALIA, GA (WTOC) - Part of the requirement here at Vidalia PD to carry a Taser is that the officer must be shot with one themselves.

Matthew Bell braced for what he's anticipated since long before he graduated the police academy on Friday.

"During our training at the academy, they told us within the first week of starting, we'd get this training at our department and have to experience the experience of it," said Officer Bell.

These new officers went through the brief but painful lesson so they know the effects this non-lethal response has on muscles and sensory nerves.

"At the academy, we went over some case law and talked about when it's okay to use one and when it's not," said Bell.

"One of the reasons we do this is to keep them from abusing the use of it. They know what it feels like and how much it hurts," said Vidalia Police Chief Frank Waits.

Finally, it was Bell's turn.

"It felt like I got hit by a truck. It sucked. But afterward, I was okay. But during it," said Bell.

He and others hope they don't need to use it often, but they're glad to have it when it's needed.

If officers use it in the line of duty, there's almost as much scrutiny as if they used their gun. The case comes back here and the department reviews what happened and why to make sure officers don't violate policy or break the law.

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