Stun guns are often used by law enforcement to incapacitate suspects. When the non-lethal weapon is deployed, it sends an electrical charge. With Taser-style stun guns, as often used by police, a wire is projected with small barbs that attach themselves to the subject. These insulated wires stay attached while “tasing” is in progress.
Researchers at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center were curious if the wire could not only send a charge, but also receive information - a two way street as opposed to a one way. If so, a stun gun could possibly receive EKG tracings.
Dr. Jason Stopyra, lead author of the study, says that safety is what prompted the research.
“There's still controversy, despite a lot of information that says that Tasers are safe, less lethal. There's still been documented bad outcomes or deaths even. We want to make sure that we keep both the subject and the law enforcement officer as safe as we can.”
The modified stun guns have just passed the proof of concept phase, after being tested on volunteers from the Mount Airy Police Department.