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San Francisco Transit Police BART will use Taser.

BART Police Car

The San Francisco Bay Area Rapid Transit Police -BART-  will purchase 130 more Tasers, enough to assign the electric-guns to every BART police officer on the transit agency’s police force.

The $140,775 purchase was  approved unanimously Thursday by the BART board, and BART Police Chief Kenton Rainey said that the use of Tasers will boost confidence that BART officers will be familiar with the Tasers and properly use them.

The transit agency’s police force has had 60 Tasers since 2008. The BART Police Department is a special dept. It is comprised of 296 personnel, of which 206 are sworn peace officers anywhere in California. Its chief of police commands the department that is BART’s sole law-enforcement entity and provides the full range of police services. To prepare for major emergencies, critical incidents, and tactical responses, the department is a signatory to the Bay Area’s mutual-aid pacts and has teams of highly trained officers for tactical response and/or crisis negotiations.

Community-service officers, communications/9-1-1 dispatchers, revenue protection-guards, and clerical staff and supervisors comprise the department’s civilian employees. Qualifications and training for BART police officers exceed the guidelines of the state’s Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training, which certifies all California peace officers. In addition to meeting POST requirements, every BART police officer applicant must have completed at least a year of college. Most officers are assigned to the Patrol Bureau and become eligible for specialized assignments, including: field training officer; canine handler; SWAT operator; detective; bicycle patrol; personnel and training officer; applicant background investigator; crime analyst; administrative traffic officer; FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force investigator; and undercover anti-vandalism and special-enforcement teams.

BART Director Lynette Sweet of San Francisco said she doesn’t support Tasers for transit police, but thinks it’s better for officers to have their own rather than rely on weapons and holsters they’re not familiar with. READ MORE HERE