FLOCKTON residents have accused the police of ‘overkill’ after a man was Tasered in the village.
Police were called to reports of a disturbance at Parkside, a residential street in the village, at 11pm on Saturday May 22.
A police statement said officers were attacked by a 10-strong gang throwing missiles and officers were forced to shoot a 20-year-old man with a stun gun after he resisted arrest.
Dozens of police, dog handlers and the police helicopter then swooped on the tiny pit village after the officers called for help.
But residents have now come forward and claimed the disturbance was just two brothers arguing over a cigarette.
And they also claimed the man was Tasered before the stones were thrown.
Jacqueline Ryan, who lives on the street, said she was at the incident and said the close-knit community was in shock at how events had unfolded.
She said: “I couldn’t believe the amount of police cars that were there.
“I could believe it if he’d had a knife or a gun but he didn’t have anything, it was massive overkill, it just beggars belief.
“It was just two brothers arguing. They argue all the time, it’s a well known fact round here.
“One of the older residents has rung the police and said something is kicking off.
“The lady that did ring up complains if somebody sneezes outside.”
Mrs Ryan admitted the boys were shouting but said police claims of a gang of 10 throwing missiles were untrue.
She said: “A few things were thrown, but when the police told them to stop they did.
“There was just a couple of lads there.
“As the lad has tried to walk away he tripped over and that was when they Tasered him in the back. He was scared. It was like an epileptic fit, you could literally see him shaking.
“They took the lad and put him in the back of the van.
“You could hear the screaming as soon as the van started moving away.
“That’s what made so many people angry.”
And Mrs Ryan, who has previously worked with the police as a voluntary youth worker, said she and her friend were both pushed by police officers as they protested about the police’s actions.
Flockton resident Kieran Conway said he was standing three feet away as the police officer shot the man with the 50,000 volt stun gun.
He said: “He should not have Tasered him as he was actually running away and also the stones were thrown after the officer had Tasered him.
“He kept it active for ages while he was fitting on the floor.
“He was not a threat when he used the Taser and in my view it should not be used on a person if they are running away.
“The threat in my view had passed when he ran off, so he did not need to Taser him at all.
“There was also a two-year-old child standing a few feet away from him when the Taser struck him in the back, so it was even more risky for the officer to use it.”
The man was arrested following reports of a disturbance and later released on police bail.
A West Yorkshire Police spokeswoman said they could only respond if a formal complaint was made and an inquiry launched.