More London police officers are to be armed with Tasers – and the controversial stun guns could be kept in every patrol car in the capital.
The new Metropolitan Police Commissioner, Bernard Hogan-Howe, called for officers to be routinely issued with Tasers to enable them to combat outbreaks of violence.
His comments came after four policemen were stabbed and seriously injured in a butcher's shop in north-west London last weekend. It took officers armed with Tasers 20 minutes to reach the scene.
The Commissioner told LBC Radio: "I want to see wide availability of Taser. What we need to make sure is that it's available when it's needed.One of the options is every police car, another one might be one of our response cars."
He said he would hold talks with the Metropolitan Police Authority over how widely the stun guns should be issued.
But Dee Doocey, a Liberal Democrat member of the London Assembly, said routinely carrying Tasers on everyday patrols would "do irreparable damage to the reputation of our unarmed police service".