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Black people 'more likely to be tasered' POLICE ADMIT DISPARITY IN FIGURES.

Byline: Nick McCarthy Crime Correspondent

BLACK people are more likely to be targeted by taser police in the West Midlands than white or Asians, according to new figures.

The issue was discussed at a meeting of the West Midlands Police and Crime Board, which was provided details about the ethnic background of victims.

In the report about the usage, Assistant Chief Constable Gareth Cann said there is a disparity in the deployment of tasers against black people in the West Midlands.

He added: "There appears to be some disproportionality in the number of deployments for Asian and black ethnic groups; with deployments against individuals of an Asian background being less than would be anticipated and deployments against black individuals being higher.

"As a force average, the level of deployments against persons recorded as white in 2014 is 67.2 per cent and is broadly similar to census data showing the white population across the force area to be 70.6 per cent.

"The proportion of deployments against persons recorded as Asian is 8.56 per cent for 2014 against census figures of 18.23 per cent.

For persons recorded as black, the proportion of deployments is 13.24 per cent in 2014 compared to a population percentage of 6.14 per cent."

Board member Councillor Ernie Hendricks, said: "What I do not understand is that the figures are half that of the population in the Asian category, but are far higher if you are black, which is really worrying."

ACC Cann said: "There is a correlation between taser usage and deployments in areas where there is the highest levels of recorded crime and higher levels of more violent crime.

"But what we still can't explain is the disproportionality because we don't know precisely why.

"It is important to point out that we are talking about around 1,000 deployments across the year, so this is around 130.

"The figures for 2014 have not yet been completed or verified by the Home Office but early indications show that total taser usage may be down by around 12 per cent from 2013."

| The Mail revealed in September that West Midlands Police had been ordered to pay PS26,500 compensation to a former security who was tasered and wrongly arrested by officers.

A jury at Birmingham County Court decided police had subjected Ivan Martin, 54, of Bromford Bridge, to an unprovoked assault and awarded him damages.

At the time the force confirmed that one officer involved received management action after an internal investigation.

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Publication:Birmingham Mail (England)
Date:Feb 28, 2015
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