Truro cops pick radar guns over Tasers
By CATHY VON KINTZEL Truro Bureau
Tue. Feb 3 - 5:42 AMTruro police have opted to arm themselves with radar guns instead of stun guns this year.
Truro town council agreed Monday to spend $5,000 that had been earmarked for two new Tasers on two radar units instead.
The radar guns will be installed in marked patrol cars because speeders continue to be a key concern for residents.
Police Chief David MacNeil said the decision has nothing to do with recent controversies surrounding the use of stun guns.
"We have three Tasers now and that’s plenty for us," he said in an interview outside town council’s monthly meeting. "We have very low Taser use and felt the money could be better spent."
Off the top of his head, the chief estimated his officers have used Tasers three times since they began using the stun guns in 2003.
"Based on need and usage, we feel we have enough to adequately protect the public and our members."
The new radar units mean a total of five Truro Police Service vehicles will be equipped to nab speeders on town streets, something Chief MacNeil expects will please residents.
"All the feedback we get from the public is that we’re on the right track with our focus on traffic enforcement."
Town council also reallocated $10,000 of surplus money toward roughly 40 updated holsters for police officers.
"We’ve had the same type of holster since 1997, when we switched to 9-mm pistols from revolvers," Chief MacNeil said, adding that advances in technology make the newer holsters safer.
For example, he said, they make it more difficult for civilians to snatch officers’ guns.
The police service’s annual budget is $3.5 million, 80 per cent of which is spent on wages. The municipal force has 36 officers plus support staff for a total of 55 employees.