EIGHT thousand extra cops will be equipped with electric stun guns to help protect them from violent offenders.
Forces will receive ring-fenced cash to purchase more than 50,000 volt tasers to fend off attackers.
The new equipment will form part of bobbies’ armoury which also includes handcuffs, CS Spray, batons and body armour.
It forms part of a £10million fund from the Home Office to empower cops with money available to train more cops on how to deploy them.Applications were based on threats and risks in their areas as Police and Crime Commissioners outlined their demands.
The Metropolitan Police will receive 2,382 tasers with Lancashire receiving 380 and Merseyside 310.
A further £3.3million from remaining from the fund will help tackle serious violence and county lines.
But human rights group Liberty have warned that arming more officers risks “escalating rather than reducing” violence on the streets.
Northamptonshire Police chief Nick Adderley last year spoke of the “worrying” level of violence towards police officers.He added: “I’ve made the prediction that, probably within the next three years, Tasers will be considered as personal protective equipment and it would be issued alongside batons, gas and ‘cuffs.”
The move follows a Tory manifesto commitment to increase the number of police officers by 20,000 over three years.
Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “Our brave police officers put themselves in harm’s way to protect us all and Taser is a vital option in dangerous situations.This funding forms part of our commitment to ensure forces have the powers, resources and tools they need to keep themselves and the public safe.”
John Apter, National Chair of the Police Federation of England and Wales, said: “Taser is an essential piece of equipment which has saved many police officers from serious injury or worse.
“I have campaigned for ring fenced funding for more colleagues to have access to Taser and it’s refreshing that the Home Secretary has listened and acted.
“Policing is dangerous and unpredictable, my colleagues need all the support they can get and I hope this extra funding will make a difference.”
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