Taser Maker Targets Civilian Sales

"Amnesty International does not oppose the use of Tasers for police absolutely," said Schulz.

Schulz said independent tests need to be conducted on how Taser shocks affect vulnerable populations, such as people with cardiac or neurological problems, and that police need to adopt standards to use Tasers only as a last resort with those populations.

Could Home Use Lead to Abuse?

Some argue that Taser use at home could lead to abuse, with husbands shocking wives, parents shocking kids as discipline, or people using them to control their pets. A 40-year-old Florida man faces felony child-abuse charges after he allegedly used a stun gun -- though not the Taser International brand -- to discipline his son.

Hart said that there is always the possibility of misuse, which he called regrettable, but part of a free society.

"If [people] are going to abuse their spouse or pet or child, they are going to abuse them, with or without the Taser," he said. "The Taser is meant to save lives."

Smith added that Taser International supports legislation to require background checks on all Taser purchases and to increase penalties for people who misuse them.

Schulz, however, said that there are few restrictions on the sale of Tasers and other stun guns, especially over the Internet.

"We already have enough abuse of our children, our elderly and spouses without handing ... anybody a weapon that can be utilized in this uncontrolled fashion," he said.

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