Philadelphia police commissioner defends department amid criticism over lack of Tasers

Philadelphia police commissioner defends department amid criticism over lack of Tasers, following officer-involved shooting

10/29/2020 6:28:00 PM

Philadelphia police commissioner defends department amid criticism over lack of Tasers, following officer-involved shooting

Philadelphia’s police commissioner is defending herself and her officers against what the city’s former mayor called a “failure of leadership” over the department’s lack of Tasers for personnel, a topic that has received attention in the wake of the shooting death of Walter Wallace Jr.

for personnel, a topic that has received attention in the wake of the shooting death of Walter Wallace Jr.Philly police officers were not equipped with Tasers when they responded to the Monday afternoon 911 call involving 27-year-old Wallace, who was shot and killed after he allegedly ignored orders to drop a knife and charged at police, officials announced earlier this week.

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Of themore than 6,300sworn PPD officers, 2,301 have completed the necessary training and currently carry Tasers, the department told Fox News on Wednesday. People stand near the scene of a police shooting in Philadelphia, Monday, Oct. 26, 2020, after police officers fatally shot a man during a confrontation. (Tom Gralish/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

But the lack of Tasers for all personnel has drawn criticism from some, reportedly including the city’s former mayor John Street.“This is a failure of leadership,” Street said, according toCBS 3 Philly. “We take nine months to train someone to be a member of the Philadelphia Police Department. We spend tens of thousands of dollars. It is inexcusable for those police officers to be there without the proper equipment. The only person that you can hold responsible is the leadership of the city. That situation should've never have happened.”

But Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw told the news station there has been a line item in the city’s annual budget for $900,000 to go toward Tasers, according to a late Wednesday report. The funding “has been approved,” she said.Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw, center, and Mayor Jim Kenney, fourth from eft, meet with people, Thursday, June 4, 2020, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)

PHILADELPHIA TO RELEASE POLICE BODY CAMERA FOOTAGE, 911 CALLS IN WALTER WALLACE JR. SHOOTING“No one has said, ‘No, we’re not going to give you this money,’” Outlaw continued, according to CBS 3. “Did there need to be some rethinking in how we deploy the Tasers or the amount of Tasers that we were purchasing? Maybe, but to say it’s a failure of leadership I think not only is it unfair, but I think it’s really easy to sit back and Monday morning quarterback.”

Wallace was fatally shot shortly before 4 p.m. Monday in the city’s Cobbs Creek neighborhood. He was struck in the shoulder and chest and taken to the hospital in a police car but could not be saved, officials previously said.PHILADELPHIA POLICE SAY 1,000 LOOTERS TARGETING BUSINESSES ON SECOND NIGHT OF PROTESTS

His family’s lawyer said Tuesday they had called for an ambulance to get him help with a mental health crisis, not for police intervention. Wallace’s parents said officers knew their son was in a mental health crisis because they had been to the family's house three times Monday.

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Protesters confront police during a march Tuesday, Oct. 27, 2020, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)His death prompted widespread protests that devolved into unrest, including violence and looting. Officials previously said officers fired 14 shots during their Monday evening confrontation with Wallace, who was armed and charged at police despite their orders that he drop the knife. The shooting was 

caught on video.Outlaw said the officers have been pulled from street duty, but the department would not be releasing their names or any information, such as their race or ethnicity, until the department was sure it would not jeopardize their safety.Outlaw said during a Tuesday press conference that the department is working to outfit all officers with Tasers but could not immediately say how many officers do or do not have them.  

“Every police officer is not issued a Taser at this time. We went back during this last budget cycle. We requested additional funding so that we could continue to outfit our officers with Tasers," she said.“It was made clear to me upon my arrival here that everyone needs to have a Taser or an ECW, an electronic control weapon, assigned to them,” she said, noting that “many other officers” in the department are not deployed with such kinds of weapons.

Outlaw said Wednesday the city plans to release the 911 call and body camera footage in connection with Wallace’s shooting “in the near future.”The Associated Press contributed to this report. Stephanie Pagones is a Digital Reporter for FOX Business and Fox News. Follow her on Twitter at @steph_pagones.

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Using tasers could have saved this man’s life. New police commissioner seems to want to curry favor with the FOP! Not impressed! 😡😡😡

Police officers had 'what appeared to be blood' thrown on them during Philadelphia protests, commissioner saysIn response to the Walter Wallace Jr. shooting, protesters have clashed with police and caused widespread damage across the city. I don't see the problem. They don't mind blood when they draw it out through gunfire? Whats the problem now? ACAB ftp Cast off from them 'Protecting and Serving'. Easy solution to cop’s injuries. Stop killing people that could be apprehended by a law enforcement professional that is not a coward . How many shots are needed by the scared crybabies ?

Philadelphia police ask residents to stay indoors as spurts of violence erupt during protests over the fatal police shooting of Walter Wallace Jr.The Philadelphia Police Department requested that residents in seven districts stay indoors as demonstrators took to the streets for a second night following the fatal police shooting of Walter Wallace Jr. Maybe shit would calm down if the cops would stop shooting unarmed civilians. 🤔 We should not forget,the People of the USA stand all under 1 and the same Flag? Don't fight, stick together. Otherwise China's dream come true? A Country, that harms itself ? Similar with Germany+Eu,the Ch. Angela Merkel has already wasted the last over 8 years,and China Benefit. BITCOIN IS GOING NUTS!! It is up over $500 to $13.7k and it isn't suppose to slow down till 20k!!!! SHES A PEACH 🍑!!

Looting breaks out in Philadelphia as Walmart and other stores ransackedPolice in Philadelphia warned residents in several of the city's districts to remain indoors amid a second successive night of unrest. Just another mostly peaceful protest, looking for bread according to AOC. Home grown terrorists. Throw them in jail.

Philadelphia pledges better response after Black man's deathPhiladelphia's police commissioner says 911 tapes and body camera footage in the slaying of Walter Wallace Jr. will be released “in the near future.” The Black man was fatally shot by police after authorities say he ignored orders to drop a knife. Maybe he should have dropped the knife The MAGA Cult and its Leader RealDonaldTrump --are a THREAT to the 1st Amendment Message Endorsed

Walter Wallace's Family Calls for Justice in His Fatal Philly PD ShootingWalter Wallace's family calls for justice in wake of his fatal interaction with police in Philadelphia. Dumbest thing ever get was running at them with a knife Really? Even I could see he had a was not a textbook or cell phone in his hand... Resisting arrest with a weapon is a death wish

Heightened unrest in Philadelphia after Black man's killingPhiladelphia braced for more demonstrations over the police killing of a Black man holding a knife following two nights of protests that set off unrelated pilfering of stores. The parents say police knew their son was in a mental health crisis. Looting You spelled “looting” wrong. 'demonstrations'