Axon Enterprise Intends To Arm The US Police With A New Generation Of Tasers
The Arizona-based company Axon Enterprise plans to develop a new generation of stun guns to equip all US police with them in ten years and replace the firearms that are currently in the Arsenal of law enforcement officers. The Wall Street Journal reported about these plans of the company's founder, Rick Smith, on Friday.
"Lethal force remains the most effective method of repelling threats. If we manage to develop a weapon that does this task and does not kill anyone, then the meaning of killing people will disappear by itself," Smith told the publication.
According to the newspaper, about 70% of US police officers have Axon stun guns in their possession. Law enforcement agencies pay the company $40-60 a month for the right to use each copy of this special equipment. The company's revenue was $531 million last year. Almost half of this amount was generated by payments for tasers, the rest-proceeds from the sale of mobile video recorders, and their accompanying "cloud" storage.
After mass demonstrations and pogroms that took place in many US cities this year, Axon's stock prices on the stock exchange jumped by almost 30%, reaching a record of $100 in June, and the company's market value approached $6 billion. Its leadership plans in the next ten years to first develop a new generation of stun guns - more accurate and more multi-discharge - and then prove the effectiveness of this non-lethal weapon. The third stage involves the development of rules for the use of new special equipment by police.
Smith told the newspaper of his determination to implement his plan, despite the reduction in police funding, which became rampant after the actual murder of an African-American George Floyd by law enforcement officers in Minnesota. The head of the company expects that the case will be limited to reducing the number of police officers. Also, he has high hopes for the release of personal video recorders, which back in 2012 was unprofitable, mainly due to the reluctance of police to store personal data and video recordings of arrests in the "cloud." Skepticism about registrars changed dramatically in 2014 after the murder of an 18-year-old black man, Michael Brown, by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri.
A portable tracking tool helped determine which of the two versions of this tragedy is correct, Smith said. His product helped to understand the death of Floyd in Minneapolis and the African-American Rashard Brooks in Atlanta (GA). About 250 thousand registrars manufactured by Axon were delivered to law enforcement agencies in the United States.