Pensacola Officer Fires Taser at Teen on Bike From Moving Car and Then Runs Over the Teen

There is a call to ban tasers in Pensacola after a series of injuries and fatalities linked to the use of the weapons. In one of the most controversial cases, Victor Steen, 17, died after being first tasered by an officer and then run over by his cruiser. For the video, click here. A judge has ruled, however, that the officer responsible committed no crime in the death of Steen.

Officer Jerald Ard spotted the teen is a vacant construction site and ordered him to stop. When the teen took off on his bike, the officer pursued him and fired a taser at Steen through his car window in 2009. He then ran over the boy with his cruiser — killing him.

Here are excerpts from Ard’s disciplinary report. The report includes the following finding:

After reviewing the video evidence in this incident, I believe that the pursuit did expose the subject to unreasonable risk of harm or injury. At times in the pursuit, Officer Ard drove his cruiser so close to the suspect’s bike that it would have been difficult if not impossible for him to stop if the suspect fell from the bike. I also found it disturbing that Officer Ard attempted to tase the suspect on a bike as he rode next to him. If this action would have been successful, it is very possible that the suspect would have sustained serious injuries from the fall.

The teen was the fourth person who died in Florida in 2009 and the 57th such death since 2001. St. Petersburg was cited by Amnesty International as a city with the highest fatalities in the nation from such tasers.

The family is now filing a lawsuit in the matter.

33 thoughts on “Pensacola Officer Fires Taser at Teen on Bike From Moving Car and Then Runs Over the Teen”

  1. I find this extremely hypocritical. I’m told by police that as a woman I am not allowed to carry or use pepper spray because if I’m being attacked I am likely to spray myself because I am not trained to determine which way the wind is blowing. Isn’t it common sense that if you taser someone, he or she is going to fall?? And if he or she is on a bike that they will fall of the bike and onto the ground next to you?? Shouldn’t cops be trained to use tasers?? Meaning that if he or she tasers someone on a bike they should be able to predict that he or she will fall of the bike and onto the ground… Next to the moving car!! not only was the cop using an excessive action for a minimal infraction, his incompentence cost a boy his life!! And cops wonder why people dont trust or like them… Can you say AUTHORITY ABUSE?!?!?

  2. Sick and Tired,

    You are fucking crazy. What if that happened to your miscreant child? But please do see the astounding case that is applicable to this situation Tennessee V Garner. Now do officers have the right to use deadly force when a non threatening alleged felon is running? Don’t think so.

    From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
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    Tennessee v. Garner
    Seal of the United States Supreme Court.svg
    Supreme Court of the United States
    Argued October 30, 1984
    Decided March 27, 1985
    Full case name Tennessee v. Edward Garner, et al.
    Citations 471 U.S. 1 (more)
    105 S. Ct. 1694; 85 L. Ed. 2d 1; 1985 U.S. LEXIS 195; 53 U.S.L.W. 4410
    Prior history On certiorari from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit
    Subsequent history Remanded
    Law enforcement officers pursuing an unarmed suspect may use deadly force to prevent escape only if the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.
    Court membership
    Chief Justice
    Warren E. Burger
    Associate Justices
    William J. Brennan, Jr. · Byron White
    Thurgood Marshall · Harry Blackmun
    Lewis F. Powell, Jr. · William Rehnquist
    John P. Stevens · Sandra Day O’Connor
    Case opinions
    Majority White, joined by Brennan, Marshall, Blackmun, Powell, Stevens
    Dissent O’Connor, joined by Burger, Rehnquist
    Laws applied
    U.S. Const. amend. IV

    Tennessee v. Garner, 471 U.S. 1 (1985), was a case in which the Supreme Court of the United States held that under the Fourth Amendment, when a law enforcement officer is pursuing a fleeing suspect, he or she may use deadly force only to prevent escape if the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others.

    I am sorry, where did you get the ideal that this was permissible conduct. You see here in Texas they go swimming with hand cuffs. That was considered officer error. It could have happened to anyone as they were on a work detail and the boat capsized. Damn good job on that one, the inmate/trustees were handcuffed to the boat. The only one escaping was the deputy and he could stand up in the water but made it back to shore safely.

  3. All you people make me sick! You should all be ashamed of yourselves. Yes this is a horrible incident that ended in the death of a person, but all if your over generilzations about police officers and the job they have to do is disgusting. Yes this child died, but it wouldn’t have happened if he did not run from the cops plain and simple. Should the cop have used the taser in this way, probably not, but if you disgusting people actually looked at accurate facts you would now how many police and civilian lives thus weapon has actually saved. I’m doody this child has died, but to say the things you are saying about the men and women who give up there lives to protect is wrong. Do I believe that the ofc in this case made an error of judgement and could have chosen other options? Yes, but the simple fact of the matter is by state law and the fourth amendment he had every right to stop, detain, and question the kid and he ran.

  4. Officer Jerald Ard is working the Pensacola PD info desk right now! Give him a call and let him know how you feel about drop guns.


  5. Probably the worst choice the cop made was planting his “throw down gun” while the dash cam on a back up cruiser was running. So the kid was found to have a 9mm in his pocket when they pulled the cruiser off him that just happened to be wiped clean of any fingerprints. In the cops favor, the shoofly who questioned him asked one question, Did you plant a gun? And he took the cops No as an honest answer. Would that we could all be interrogated so gently.

  6. Jr:

    “Did the officer make some poor choices, yes. Should the suspect be held liable for not stopping, YES! Why is it the police are almost always held 100% liable in these situations?”


    Because we give them the training, authority, and the guns to do their jobs as our servants and not our masters. Plus, the last time I looked no one –absolutely no one–was forcing them to do this job against their will. Most of the good cops I know don’t whine about their lot, and they have even less tolerance for the “cowboy cops” you seem to revere. Bad choices indeed, and seventeen-year-old Victor Steen is dead for the crime of eluding the police. Here in Virginia that’s usually a fine. Apparently, in Florida it’s a capital offense.

  7. I watched the video and I am saddened at the lack of respect for the life of that child during the chase. The officer clearly lost control of his emotions while trying to stop the young man. Did he intentionally think I will kill him, I think not. Is he responsible for the death absolutely. He continued to operate the vehicle at speed after the child was out of his sight. In other words he did not get his lazy red neck butt out of the car to investigate the situation.
    The youth in Florida have good reason to run from the police. I lived in Florida for 17 years. I have never seen police act out the way they do. Society in Florida has excepted this behavior as the norm. Florida has the highest death rate for pedestrians and bicyclists over any other state. You can’t expect the judge to side with anybody but the police when they are trying to cover there financial butts over a law suit. They just don’t care. It is nothing personal it is business.

  8. First, the use of the word “murder” is outright wrong. Use some common sense people. If you watch the video and consider the effects of inertia it is clear that a car is NOT going to stop fast enough to avoid contact.

    Did the officer make some poor choices, yes. Should the suspect be held liable for not stopping, YES! Why is it the police are almost always held 100% liable in these situations? Especially by a gang of bleeding heart liberals crying brutality. There are some incidents that require closer scrutiny because of police misconduct, Rodney King case is a prime example. However, police officers walk a fine line upholding the laws without being labeled racist, brutal or incompetent. At the same time officers are making split second decisions under pressure while worrying about the safety of the public-at-large and their own.

    Before you fire off any response to this case consider how you would feel needing to wear body armor to work every day.How you would react knowing you are a target because of the uniform you wear and the car you drive. There are certainly some bad apples that need to be weeded out, but to make a blanket statement condemning all police is WRONG. If you should ever be the victim of a crime I am sure your tune would change.

    It is sad the young man died, but running from police is a sign of guilt. Why not just stop!!! There is too much crime, too many illegal guns on the street. Either let the police do their job or arm all of us.

  9. All you have to do, is listen to the cop’s reaction.

    He does not say, “Oh MY GOD, I NEED AN AMBULANCE! NOW!”

    NO, NO, NO.

    He says, “I need Supervisor Soandso NOW!”

    Shows exactly the state of mind he is in. Fucking crook.

  10. the use of the Taser weapon has evolved via policy and rulings, such as these, into a weapon of compliance. When did this officer fear for his safety?

    It is policy in the vast majority of Taser carrying departments that you do not use a Taser on a fleeing suspect as to not cause danger or injury OR death. Unfortunately this is not policy based on case law, it is based on multitudes of civil settlements by multitudes of offending agencies.

    Would the judge have ruled differently if the officer threw a brick at this child? What about sticking his baton through his spokes?

    However, all of these points are less topical in this situation, as the officer missed. But the attempt was made.

    Official sources say that this is merely a tragic accident because he was run down by a 4000 lb cruiser. How is this less of a weapon? What are the department policies involving a suspected trespass perp, and driving w/flashers on the wrong side of the road? Watch the video.

    The cop didn’t even stop until the landscaping on his hood encouraged him to stop his vehicle. Was the officer drunk or acting maliciously?

    Sadly, these are answers that the sitting judical already addressed to come to his opinion, and still this is the result

  11. The problem is not in the tasers but in moronic and often just badwilling cops killing innocent people and getting acquitted….

    This cop sure’s seen one too many movies…. that’s the closest I’d ever let him come to seeing a badge…

  12. cops can chase people for such minor infractions… endangering the public… wow, murdered by the police because you didn’t have a light on your bike… THE POLICE WONDER WHY THEY ARE HATED?


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