Galeano in­quest told of train­ing warn­ings No limit on tasers: cop

Townsville Bulletin - - News - by Roanne John­son roanne. john­son@ townsville­bul­letin. com. au

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.

Of some

drug

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’’.

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