Video has surfaced of Corporal Matthew Stice using a Taser on Martini Smith’s bare chest in 2009 inside the Franklin County jail in Columbus, Ohio.
According to Reuters, Smith was 20 years old and pregnant when Stice electrocuted her in custody because she was unable to remove a silver stud from her tongue.
Smith was taken to jail for allegedly stabbing a boyfriend who allegedly beat her. The charges against Smith were dismissed.
Deputy Shawnda Arnold told Smith: “Take the tongue ring out.”
However, Smith was unable to remove the stud because her hands were numb after being handcuffed for six hours with her hands behind her back, which is longer than Lee Harvey Oswald was handcuffed when he assassinated President John F. Kennedy.
“I will Tase you,” Stice threatened Smith, who was unarmed. Smith begged for a paper towel, but the deputies denied her.
Stive tased Smith who collapsed to the floor and cried: “I wasn’t harming nobody. I can’t just take it out.”
Five days later, Smith suffered a miscarriage.
“It stays with me like it was yesterday,” Smith told Reuters.
According to Reuters, police have killed 104 Americans with Tasers in jail since 2000; only two of the inmates were armed.
Some of the in-custody deaths were “multi-factorial,” while one third of the inmates were in handcuffs or other restraints when tased and killed.
Despite the deaths of over 100 Americans, Steve Tuttle, vice president of communications for Axon Enterprise Inc, which changed its name from Taser International, said:
[Tasers can] “make correctional environments significantly safer for all parties. [Axon Enterprise Inc. hears] consistent feedback that our products are having a significant impact in reducing the number of violent incidents and the number of injuries in correctional settings.