1)What reputation do the police have in your country?
2)Have the police ever wounded or killed an innocent citizen?
3)What weapons do the police carry in your country?
Reading: Police Taser Blind Man
A "terrified" blind man was hit with a 50,000-volt taser gun after police mistook his white stick for a Samurai sword.
Stroke victim Colin Farmer, 61, collapsed to the ground in shock after he was hit from behind with the gun while walking down the street in Chorley, Lancashire.
Police had received reports of a man walking through the town armed with the deadly martial arts weapon and raced to the scene to hunt down the offender.
Meanwhile Mr. Farmer, who has suffered two strokes and walks at a "snail's pace", was on his way to the pub to meet friends for a drink and did not realise anything was wrong. He had no idea a police officer had mistaken his thin white stick for a machete and ordered him to stop before pulling the trigger on the taser gun.
Mr. Farmer cried out, "I'm blind! I'm blind!" while collapsed on the floor but was still handcuffed by the officer from Lancashire Police.
"The whole thing was like being trapped in a nightmare," he told the Chorley Guardian.
Mr. Farmer said he heard shouting on the street but did not know what it was about and thought he was about to be "attacked by some hooligans". He was then struck by the taser and fell to the ground, dropping his white stick on the floor before a policeman handcuffed him. He was taken to Chorley Hospital for treatment and was later released following the incident last Friday.
Chief Superintendent Stuart Williams, from Lancashire Police, said: "We received a number of reports that a man was walking through Chorley armed with a Samurai sword and patrols were sent to look for the man. One of the officers believed he had located the offender. Despite asking the man to stop, he failed to do so and the officer discharged his taser.
"It then became apparent this man was not the person we were looking for and officers attended to him straight away. He was taken to Chorley Hospital by officers who stayed while he was checked over by medics. They then took him to meet his friends in Chorley at his request.
"Lancashire Constabulary deeply regrets what has happened. We have clearly put this man through a traumatic experience and we are extremely sorry. We have launched an urgent investigation to understand what lessons can be learned and the matter has also been referred to the Independent Police Complaints Commission."
Police Lesson Plan (ESL): Vocabulary Matching
Match the words with their meaning as used in the news lesson.
attend to sb
armed – carrying a weapon
martial arts – Oriental self-defense or combat disciplines
suffer – to feel pain or distress
pace – speed
stroke – Rapid loss of brain function due to…
trapped – stuck; unable to escape
handcuffs – a ring-shaped metal device that can be locked
hooligans – unruly and destructive people
attend to sb – to assist or help somebody
Constabulary – the local police force for districts in the UK
traumatic – psychologically painful and difficult
launch – to start an activity, especially an organized one
Police Lesson Plan (ESL): Connect the below idea(s) to make a sentence.
government / uprising
martial arts / hooligans
armed / handcuffs
launch / Constabulary
suffer / stroke
walk / pace
attend to / victim
trapped / traumatic
Police Lesson Plan (ESL): Two Role-Plays (Pair Work)
(Note: each student reads his/her role only.)
You are Colin Farmer. You arrive at the pub to meet your friends and try to tell them your remarkable story.
You are a friend of Mr. Farmer's. You are in the pub and see Mr. Farmer get out of the police car. You ask him what happened. He tells you his story. You don't believe him.
You are Stuart Williams, the Chief Superintendent of the Lancashire Constabulary. You receive a phone call. Try to defend your colleagues.
You are Theresa May, Home Secretary of the United Kingdom. You are very unhappy about this incident and the embarrassment it has caused. Telephone Stuart Williams and ask for an explanation.
Police Lesson Plan (ESL): Discussion Questions
1) Should the police officer responsible for firing at Mr. Farmer be punished? 2) What characteristics should a good police officer have? What characteristics do they often have?
Police Lesson Plan (ESL) created by James Mansfield
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