Police Abuse

Vermont State Police Withholding Information in Controversial Taser Death

Epileptic killed after calling mental health crisis line


Last summer, a 39-year-old Thetford man died after a state trooper shot him with an electronic stun gun. Macadam Mason had a lifelong epileptic disorder that occasionally impaired his cognitive abilities, and he suffered a seizure on June 19. The next day, Mason called a mental health crisis line at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center and told the operator that he planned to kill himself and others.

When police confronted Mason in his front yard, trooper David Shaffer deployed his Taser, striking Mason in the chest. A New Hampshire medical examiner later determined that the Taser's electronic jolt caused Mason's death.