San Francisco Police Commission meeting gets tense over tasers

SAN FRANCISCO (KGO) -- There were some tense moments in San Francisco Friday night as officials discussed the possible use of tasers by police.

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Public comment on the issue of outfitting San Francisco police with tasers quickly boiled over.

The police commission president suddenly stopped the meeting, protesters rallied for more than an hour and then the meeting was finally moved the session to another floor. Officials filtered in public speakers.

"I don't need anyone questioning my blackness or my gayness. I know where I stand. I need to hear people," said Commission President Julius Turman.

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A budget analysis puts the implementation of tasers at a cost of $8 million including outfitting units with defibrillators as a countermeasure to the effects of taser electricity.

"There's a definitive correlation for sudden death, but there could be some policies in place to mitigate those risks," said Dr. Zhang, an expert.

"I would like to ask the people who are endorsing tasers to please try it on yourself before you make that decision," said Maria Christina Gutierrez of the Frisco Five.

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African Americans and Latinos are much more likely to be tased, a researcher testified.

San Francisco Police Chief William Scott acknowledged this as he promised strong oversight and transparency in his bid for tasers. "De-escalation is and always will be our objective," he said.

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