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California Desert District
Release Date: 12/07/11
Contacts: Erin Curtis , 916-978-4622  
News Release No. CA-12-3

BLM Statement Regarding Taser Incident in El Centro

Regarding the incident involving a BLM Law Enforcement Ranger deploying a taser in the El Centro Field Office on October 22, 2011, the BLM issues the following statement:

The protection of public health and safety is a primary responsibility of the BLM’s law enforcement rangers.

We take allegations of misuse of the use of force seriously, and evaluate the circumstances in any case when members of the public express concerns or make a complaint. As we do in all incidents in which allegations such as these are made, the BLM has initiated an Internal Investigation to determine if the Ranger’s actions were within legal parameters and policy guidelines.

While this investigation is underway we will not release any additional information concerning the specific facts of the case. Upon completion of the investigation we will determine if there is merit to these allegations and we will take action as appropriate.

The BLM uses tasers as a law enforcement tool when threatening behavior is exhibited that poses a risk to public safety, as well as the safety of BLM staff.

The primary consideration in the use of force – including the use of tasers – is the timely and effective application of the appropriate level of force required to establish and maintain lawful control. When deploying tasers, rangers target the subject’s lower center mass, legs or back if possible. It appears the ranger targeted appropriately in this case.


California Desert District   2800 Cottage Way, Sacramento, CA 95825  

Last updated: 01-04-2012