A police officer has appeared in court after it is alleged he used his Taser gun on a 10-year-old schoolboy who refused to clean his patrol car.
Officer Chris Webb is accused of saying to the boy he would be shown ‘what happens to people who do not listen to police’ during the event at Tularosa Intermediate School in New Mexico.
He is then reported to have fired the 50,000-volt weapon at the boy.
Rachel Higgins, legal representative for the seven-stone boy, known only as RD, told Santa Fe County Court he had been suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder since the incident on May 4.
According to the complaint filed on behalf of the boy: ‘Defendant Webb asked the boy, RD, in a group of boys, who would like to clean his patrol unit.
‘A number of boys said that they would. RD, joking, said that he did not want to clean the patrol unit.’
Webb is accused of responding by aiming his Taser at the child before saying: ‘Let me show you what happens to people who do not listen to the police.’ He then allegedly stunned RD.
The complaint continued: ‘Instead of calling emergency medical personnel, Officer Webb pulled out the barbs and took the boy to the school principal’s office.’
RD’s scars were described in court as similar to those of cigarette burns and Higgins told the court he was suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.
Higgins added: ‘No reasonable officer confronting a situation where the need for force is at its lowest, on a playground with elementary age children, would have deployed the Taser in so reckless a manner as to cause physical and psychological injury.
Both the New Mexico Department of Public Safety and Webb are being sued, with Higgins looking for punitive damages for R.D for battery, failure to arrange emergency medical care, excessive force, negligent hiring, training, supervision and retention and unreasonable seizure.