August 2, 2006
A 52-year-old Bath man is recovering at Aiken Regional Medical Centers after being tasered by Aiken authorities.
It all started around 9:35 this morning. A woman called the Aiken County Sheriff's Office and reported that while driving down 421, she spotted a man with what she thought was a shotgun outside the Bath Post Office. Burnetttown police were dispatched to the scene and found a man matching the description leaving in a white Oldsmobile. The responding officer followed 52-year-old Arthur H. Reames to his residence at 73 Church Street. Reames got out of his car and then locked himself in his home.
The Aiken County Sheriff's Office sent an officer who was trained in negotiations to the scene. That officer was able to talk Reames into coming out onto his porch, and authorities then tasered him to ensure he would be restrained safely in order to search the residence for the gun. During the search of his trailer, officers uncovered no weapon, only a long black plastic tube that they believe was mistaken for a shotgun.
Lt. Michael Frank with the Aiken County Sheriff's Office says the taser was necessary because the subject was such a large man and had been resisting arrest. He says in situations like these, tasering from a distance is the safest way to secure the scene for the subject and the officers on the scene.
EMS was on the scene before the taser force was used. Reames, who has a history of mental illness, was checked out by EMS and stabilized before he was transported to the Aiken Regional Medical Center.
Lt. Frank says the ACSO has no plans to file charges against Reames.