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BFPD gets approved new TASERs

by EMILY BONSANT
Hagadone News Network | February 17, 2022 1:00 AM

BONNERS FERRY — Bonners Ferry City Council approves the purchase of updated TASER 7 for the Bonners Ferry Police Department for $16,610.

BFPD Chief Brian Zimmerman told the council at the Feb. 16 meeting that when the department attempted to schedule a recertification for the officers to use the TASER, they learned that they could not currently train and re-certify on the X26 model. This is due to the models being 20 years old.

“This caught us off guard. We scheduled the training for recertification, but they don’t recertify on these older units. So we just don't have a choice. And there's only one manufacturer, and no competition,” Zimmerman said.

There are six TASER 7 in the order. Currently, the BFPD has two that are three years old. One will be used as a spare and Zimmerman will use the other one. The equipment still works, but the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals have made it very clear that the department is required to have these tools at its disposal for the “use of force continuum,” he said.

The updated TASER 7 and the quote from the manufacturer Axon Enterprise Inc. is $16,610 for a package of six including holsters, charging bank and cartridges for training. The council approved the purchase for the equipment in a 4-0 vote.

Councilwoman Valeria Thompson said that in the future, there should be a rolling plan to replace these TASERs so there is not such a large order at one time.

“Of course we have to replace those and want our officers safe,” she said.

Once the chargers are purchased, it will not need to be purchased again later and will lower the bill for replacing equipment, she said.