Taser and Stun Gun Abuse Lawsuits

If you have been harmed by law enforcement’s use of a taser, you may qualify to bring a lawsuit. At Shealey Law Firm, our attorneys can help file a taser and stun gun abuse lawsuit. Contact our Columbia police brutality lawyers today to talk about your case.

We want you to have the compensation you deserve when you are harmed by improper, abusive or negligent taser use. Whether the law enforcement officer made a mistake or purposefully violated safety standards, you deserve justice. Those responsible should be accountable. We can be your voice and legal advocate. Let our team investigate, analyze your case and fight for your compensation.

To talk about filing a taser and stun gun abuse lawsuit with an experienced Columbia police brutality lawyer, call or message our team.

Examples of Taser Misuse

Most taser and stun gun injuries are the result of police error. The police may not intend to do any harm, though some officers use their tasers with bad intent. Most taser injuries occur because the law enforcement officer doesn’t know how to use their weapon properly.

Examples of taser abuse include:

  • Using the taser in violation of department policy including testing, training and instruction
  • Choosing to use a taser when it is not necessary based on the circumstances
  • Failing to complete periodic recertification with the weapon
  • Deploying the taser in proximity of flammable materials and chemical agents
  • Creating extended energy bursts by repeatedly pulling the trigger
  • Employing a taser when a subject is passively resisting
  • Being too far from the subject
  • Immobilizing a subject in a place where a fall is likely to occur and cause serious harm
  • Using the taser on the elderly, young, pregnant, frail, or physically or mentally challenged unless the person could do serious harm to others
  • Aiming for the eyes, face, neck or genitals
  • Striking a person who is driving a vehicle

Types of taser injuries

Taser injuries take many forms. Harm may be internal. Here are examples of taser injuries:

  • Heart arrythmia, abnormal heartbeat
  • Heart attacks, cardiac arrest
  • Broken bones
  • Traumatic brain injury, head trauma
  • Testicular torsion, blood supply disruption
  • Mechanical eye injuries, corneal lacerations, retinal tears
  • Tendon and ligament damage
  • Skin burns
  • Death, fatality

Legal Basis for Taser and Stun Gun Abuse Claim

Claims for taser and stun gun abuse are most often founded in 42 U.S. Code § 1983 and the South Carolina Tort Claims Act, S.C. Code Title 15, Chapter 78.

42 U.S. Code § 1983 taser lawsuits

42 U.S. Code § 1983 is a federal law that creates a legal action for victims of unlawful use of force under color of law. If a person is deprived of their rights, privileges or immunities, the party responsible is liable in a legal action.

A claim for improper taser use resulting in injury is weighed using an objective reasonableness standard, looking at the totality of the circumstances. Graham v. Connor, 490 U.S. 386 (1989). The fact finder considers the severity of the crime suspected, whether the subject was trying to flee and any immediate threat of harm to officers and others. Your attorney should be prepared to address the defense of qualified immunity.

SC Tort Claims Act taser lawsuits

In the South Carolina Tort Claims Act, S.C. Code § 15-78-40, the government waives immunity for tort liability in the same manner and to the same extent as private individuals under like circumstances. Although the SC Tort Claims Act does not waive immunity for actual malice or intent to harm, a claim involving intent to harm could be pursued under § 1983.

See Campbell v. City of North Charleston, 2:20-CV-00959-RMG-MGB (D.S.C., 2020).

Causation challenges in taser and stun gun abuse claims

Proving causation is critical to any taser abuse lawsuit. The defense may challenge whether the taser caused the harm suffered by the victim. With victims often having pre-existing medical conditions, plaintiffs must carefully provide testimony, including expert medical testimony, explaining how the actions of the officer caused the harm to the victim.

Lawyers in Columbia for Taser and Stun Gun Abuse

To see if you can bring a taser and stun gun abuse lawsuit and what you may receive for your case, contact a civil rights attorney at Shealey Law Firm in Columbia. We’ll talk about what happened, what’s involved in bringing a case and how our attorneys may assist you. Contact us now.


Get a Case Review

Ask us to evaluate your case by submitting a few details about your situation below.

"*" indicates required fields

By submitting this form, you agree to receive calls or text messages about your case from Shealey Law Firm. Message and data rates may apply. Message frequency varies.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.