The police officer charged after he used a stun gun on Clare Nowland, who lives with dementia in a nursing home.
A 95-year-old woman has died in hospital a week after being Tasered by an Australian police officer inside her nursing home.
Clare Nowland, who has dementia, was Tasered on May 17 after staff found her holding a steak knife outside her room in Cooma in south-east Australia.
The incident left Nowland, a great-grandfather, with critical head injuries after he fell.
He died “peacefully” in hospital surrounded by family and loved ones, police said in a statement Wednesday, adding that Nowland had 24 grandchildren and 31 great-grandchildren.
After his death, Kristian White, a 33-year-old senior police officer was charged with recklessly causing grievous bodily harm, assault causing actual bodily harm and common assault. attack incident.
The police officer, who has been suspended with pay, will appear in court on July 5. The charges will likely change after Nowland’s death.
Woman moves ‘in slow motion’
Officers were called to Yallambee Lodge nursing home in southern New South Wales by staff who told them a woman was “armed with a knife”.
Police said they urged Nowland to drop a serrated steak knife before he walked toward them “at a slow pace” with his walker, prompting an officer to fire his Taser at him.
Police are allowed to use stun guns when life is in danger, but the violence against an elderly and helpless woman has sparked a national debate about police use of the weapons in such circumstances and the competence of elderly care staff.
Police Commissioner Karen Webb said Nowland’s family had been informed of “serious charges” and thanked detectives for working so quickly after the “horrific incident”.
The episode led to calls for a New South Wales parliamentary inquiry and the release of police bodycam video of the confrontation. Police said they have no plans to release the video.
“Ms Nowland’s Tasering has sparked an outcry in the community which shows how badly we need police reform,” Sue Higginson, a member of parliament, said this week.