Taser expert says Scotty Payne's actions were within policy


    The Scotty Payne trial heads into its eighth day with witnesses from the defense taking the stand.

    Several people who were at the Bucky's on 60th and Center during the incident told the court what they saw.

    The day continues with witnesses telling the jury about the training Omaha officers go through when it comes to people who are emotionally disturbed.

    Omaha crisis trainers said officers will know in 15 seconds with a suspect whether their training will work on an emotionally disturbed person.

    Wednesday afternoon, taser expert John G. Peters Jr. told jurors today he thinks Scotty Payne;s actions were justified.

    “Sometimes you can't play fair," said Peters. "We tell officers there’s no nice way to hit anyone, but it doesn’t mean legally you can’t do it.”

    Peters told jurors the video you see doesn’t tell the whole story.

    “A lot of things that happen on video, we just can’t experience them for ourselves.”

    Another witness on the stand, a woman who trains officers on what to do in crisis and high stress situations, said officers should use their own judgement.

    Omaha police department policy states an officer needs to call a sergeant if they think someone is a danger to themselves or others, but in high stress situations that may be different.

    “It really is up to the officer to decide whether this person is harm to themselves or to others.” said Leigh Culver.

    Electrical engineer, Mark Kroll, also testified and said tasers could actually be a good thing when it comes to people who are mentally ill.

    He said studies show there are benefits to using electric current instead of turning to more traditionally lethal methods.

    Taser expert John Peters told the court what people at home see on the video is a lot different from what officers experience first hand.

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