Galeano inquest told of training warnings No limit on tasers: cop
A POLICE officer who repeatedly tasered Antonio Galeano says no upper limit was placed on the number of times he should use the device on someone during his training.
S e n i o r - Co n s t a b l e Cr a i g Myles said he was warned against overuse but allowed ‘ ‘ t h e n u mb e r o f c y c l e s reasonably necessary to restrain the subject’’.
‘‘ That’s what it says in the training book,’’ he said when questioned about his taser training.
Sen-Constable Myles made the comments while giving evidence yesterday in Brisbane at an inquest into the death i n custody of Mr Galeano in June 2009 at Brandon.
The policeman said he was aware of warnings about the application of force to people in a state of ‘‘ excited delirium’’.
Asked whether he was told a b o ut t he p o s s i b i l i t y o f tasers causing death, he said: ‘‘ They didn’t tell us much about that.’’
Nor did he understand that being high on drugs was related to mental illness, telling the inquest he thought Mr Galeano’s aggressive behaviour was solely drugrelated.
education training he had done before Mr Galeano’s death, SenConstable Myles said: ‘‘ You just read it and fill it out, you don’t really learn anything.’’
He told the hearing, before Queensland’s Deputy State Coroner Christine Clements, that he still believed his use of the taser was justified.
The policeman has admitted tasering Mr Galeano eight times as he attempted to subdue the apparently drug-affected man and previously told the inquest he d i d n ’ t t h i n k t h e d e v i c e caused pain. However, the taser used in the incident r e g i s t e r e d 2 8 s e p a r a t e 50,000-volt shocks.
E a r l i e r S e n - C o n s t a b l e Myles said he could tell the 39-year-old was still breathing because blood pooled near his face was moving as he inhaled and exhaled.
‘‘ He was breathing all the times I checked . . . you could see him breathing by the blood on the floor,’’ he said.
Under cross-examination, Sen-Constable Myles said he ‘ ‘ c o n s t a n t l y ’ ’ c h e c k e d Galeano’s breathing as he held him down, handcuffed on the floor.
Sen-Constable Myles said he did not notice that the man’s face had turned black and that he had stopped breathing until notified by Mr Galeano’s gi r l f r i end, Sandra Wynne.
He t h e n s a w t h a t Mr Galeano’s face ‘‘ had changed from blood-red to a smoky, ashy-looking colour’’.