The Philadelphia Personal Injury Law Blog

14-Year-Old Girl Tased By Allentown Officer Sues

The attorney for 14-year-old Keshana Wilson released a video showing the high school student being attacked by an Allentown police officer in the back of Dieruff High School. The police officer, Jason Ammary is shown using a Taser to shock the girl.

Wilson is now suing Ammary for damages though it’s unclear from the video just how the altercation started, reports WFMZ.

The surveillance video dates back to September of this year and shows the rear of the high school. Wilson is seen walking with two of her friends. The video pans out for a moment and then returns to the incident zooming in on an altercation between Wilson and Ammary.

Wilson and Ammary appear to be fighting and the police officer is shown pinning Wilson against a parked car, reports WFMZ. At this point, Ammary takes out a Taser and shocks the teen sending her to the ground.

Because the camera panned away from the action, we have no idea what Wilson or Ammary did to spark the argument. However, Wilson claims in her lawsuit that the attack was racially motivated.

Without video evidence, we can only guess as to whether Ammary's actions were unreasonable. Generally, police officers are given some leeway in using force to perform their jobs. However, there are limits on the amount of force they can use.

In this case, if the girl acted menacingly or threatened harm, Ammary may have been justified in using his Taser. On the other hand, if the girl was simply walking in the parking lot when Ammary tased her, his actions would likely be excessive.

In the absence of the video, one can only guess as to whether Jason Ammary's actions against 14-year-old Keshana Wilson were reasonable. However, a picture is worth a thousand words, and presumably a video is worth a lot more, and so the surveillance footage showing the tasing of the teen is certainly alarming.

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