There might be a beneficiary to the apparent increased militancy of the US police establishment, as first witnessed in the Ferguson, Mo police shooting and related riots: TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR).
Taser stock up 8% due to increase in demand of wearable police cameras
While analysts are chalking up the rise in the stock to the event in Fergson, where an unarmed man was apparently shot while facing an officer, the report says the focus remains on TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR)’s camera. A Taser gun could might also have been used instead of lethal force in the incident.
While the official police report on the incident has yet to be released, press reports from the scene indicate that the US Department of Justice is now involved in the autopsy as National Guard troops moved into the area. Reports on NBC’s evening news and in other media indicate a small group of people is displaying weapons in the case, a critical concern for police.
Wearable police cameras would have helped in Fergerson teen shooting case
At issue in the case is if the shooting victim, 18-year-old Michael Brown, was shot by police with his arms raised in the air, surrendering, or if he was rushing towards Fergerson police officer Darren Wilson, who was later named as the shooter.
A video camera on the officer in question would have provided the answer to this question, although ballistics can determine the approximate length at which the six shots entered Brown’s body.
TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR), which sold $2.83 million AXON body cameras in the second quarter according to a 10 Q report cited by Business Insider, recently announced the Fresno, CA police department had ordered 100 of the devices.
Mounting cameras on police officer’s body is said to have many benefits. Studies show officers behave better when they are aware their actions are being monitored, but it can cut down on liability insurance costs cases of potential misconduct can be clearly determined.
A year-long Cambridge University study cited in a recent TASER International, Inc. (NASDAQ:TASR) press release showed video cameras resulted in an 88% reduction in citizen complaints and a 60% reduction in uses of police force. The study, conducted at the Rialto, CA Police Department, investigated whether officers’ use of video cameras could bring measurable benefits to relations between police and civilians. The study results, while on a limited dataset of one police jurisdiction, showed that after implementation of video cameras police behavior improved markedly.