Outrage grows after officer stuns grandmother

Video posted on YouTube shows Tallahassee officer using stun gun on woman.
Video posted on YouTube shows Tallahassee officer using stun gun on woman.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Prosecutors want answers quickly after a grandmother was hit with a police stun gun this week in Tallahassee.

The use of a stun gun against grandmother Viola Young appears to be contrary to the Tallahassee Police Department's Use of Force guidelines, which were changed when a new chief took over in December. The guidelines call for officers to de-escalate encounters with citizens or suspects.

State Attorney Willie Meggs wants a speedy investigation because outrage is building in the community.

"It needs to be done and done rapidly, though," Meggs said.

He said he is not passing judgment on whether or not Use of Force policies were followed, but he said it appears there was a lack of common sense.


Young's daughter said her mother is still shaken.

"She's not good. She's been up and down, still. I can't speak to whether she got hurt," Laguana Young said. "You'll have to ask her lawyer about her."

Attorney Ben Crump has represented Martin Lee Anderson's family, Trayvon Martin's family, and Michael Brown's family in Ferguson. He is not involved in this case, but said the video says it all.

"Absolutely excessive force. She posed no threat as she was walking away," Crump said.

During the incident, the person who shot the cellphone video says about police: "And they wonder why they are hated."

Young's neighbor said the comment is sad but true.

"We were raised to be officer friendly. And nowadays we have to teach our kids to go in the opposite direction because of incidents like this," LaFonda Cook said. "If you'll do this to an elderly woman, what will you do on our children?"

Both the grandmother and the police officer, who's been placed on leave, have hired attorneys.