The Australian police officer who deployed a taser against a 95-year-old woman has been placed on suspension from duty with pay. The incident occurred at a nursing home in Cooma, where Clare Nowland, a resident of Cooma, suffered the harsh effects of the taser. As a result, she sustained a head injury and is currently receiving end-of-life care at a hospital.
In the ongoing investigation of this critical incident, further updates will be provided to the public. On May 17, at Yallambee Lodge, a care home for the elderly, the police employed the taser on Nowland, who relies on a walking frame. The reported reason for this action was her failure to relinquish a steak knife.
Following the taser deployment, Nowland fell, striking her head on the floor and sustaining severe injuries. She was subsequently transported to Cooma District Hospital for medical treatment. Her family has been by her side during this time, although they hold little hope for her recovery. The entire incident was captured on the body-worn camera of the involved officers and will be utilized in the ongoing investigation.
New South Wales Police Commissioner Karen Webb has stated that she intends to refrain from watching the footage until all statements and other evidence have been thoroughly reviewed. Commissioner Webb explained during an interview on Sydney’s 2GB radio that she wants to maintain an impartial position and make her determination based on the complete brief of evidence, without being influenced by viewing a portion of it out of context.
The police officer’s suspension occurred shortly after another family in New South Wales released footage from 2020 depicting an elderly woman being handcuffed by six police officers at an aged care home. The family of the woman involved in that incident had previously filed a lawsuit against the NSW police, resulting in compensation being awarded in 2021. However, in light of the recent tasering incident involving Clare Nowland in Cooma, this family chose to release the footage from 2020 to the public.