Humberside

Wife of Epworth Alzheimer's man critical of taser use

The wife of a man with Alzheimer's Disease who was shot with a Taser after becoming violent has criticised the actions of officers.

Peter Russell, 59, was shot with a stun gun on 6 March in Epworth, a report by Humberside Police Authority revealed.

His wife, Diane said his mental state was like that of a baby "and you wouldn't taser a baby".

But Humberside Police said Mr Russell injured two officers and the action was taken for his own safety and others.

Mrs Russell said: "With Alzheimer's you're back to being in a baby stage and it's like I said to them [police] you wouldn't taser a baby for being naughty.

"Alright, he's bigger, he's stronger, he's a grown man, but they [sufferers] go back to the baby stage."

Mrs Russell described the scene in their home after the taser had been used.

'Preserve the dignity'

She said: "I poked my head around the corner of the door, and I saw him laid on the floor.

"His legs and arms were strapped up."

But Supt Christine Kelk, of Humberside Police, defended the officers' actions.

She said: "It was most definitely the right thing to do, I'm incredibly proud of the way our officers reacted.

"They did exactly what they could to preserve the dignity of Peter and get him to hospital so he could get some medical treatment."

Supt Kelk said Mr Russell had become increasingly violent and initially there had only been one officer at the scene along with a doctor.

Sarah Moody, from the Alzheimer's Society, said there should have been a "step-back" from the incident.

She said: "This is a man with an illness who is obviously very frightened, who was in his own home.

"He did have to be taken out of his home, but I think there could have been a better way of approaching that."

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