The FBI will investigate Bastrop County Deputy Randy McMillan’s use of a stun gun on 17-year-old Noe Nino de Rivera.
Breitbart Texas previously reported on the November 20, 2014 incident where the teen went into a coma after McMillan used a taser on him in a hallway at Cedar Creek High School. Officers argue that a taser was used because the teen was being “combative.” De Rivera’s parents, however, claim that their son was in the hallway trying to break up a fight between two other students — he was merely trying to “diffuse the situation,” they alleged. After being tased, de Rivera fell backwards and hit his head on the floor. McMillan then handcuffed the unconscious teen.
De Rivera was airlifted to St. David’s Medical Center. He had brain surgery to repair a hemorrhage and was induced into a coma.
Although the teen is no longer in the coma, but now suffers from potentially serious neurological problems.
The FBI investigation will look into whether or not McMillan abused his power by using the stun gun on de Rivera. Michelle Lee, a spokeswoman for the FBI, said, “The FBI has reviewed the material, and we are opening an official investigation.”
The incident has sparked a state-wide discussion about taser use in public schools.
The Texas American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) recently called for “affirmative steps to end the use of tasers and pepper spray on students” in public schools. The ACLU wrote a letter to Commissioner of Education Michael Williams, co-authored with several other Texas-based groups. Texas Appleseed Deputy Director Deborah Fowler said, “Given the dangers associated with tasers and pepper spray – particularly for children – we believe the state’s leadership must act more definitively to protect our youth.”
Current policy prevents tasers being used on individuals under 14-years-old as well as individuals with disabilities.
Critics of the ACLU’s proposal assert that tasers are necessary to protect students from peers who may pose a threat. Ray Hunt, president of the Houston Police Officers’ Union, said tasers are needed in today’s public schools. “When you say students don’t get the misconception of a 5 or 6 year old. Students can be 18 or 19 years old as well. If you don’t have most of those tools at your disposal you’re gonna have to go hands-on or use lethal force and I don’t think that’s the answer.”
We believe that they’re a good tool for police officers and there’s no way I’d be a school district police officer without one,” President Hunt said.
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