Security units of the National Guard may be allowed to use stun guns. This is stated in the draft order of the Federal Service of the National Guard Troops, posted on the portal of draft regulatory legal acts last Wednesday, February 8. Parlamentskaya Gazeta tells what is known about the changes, and at the same time understands the intricacies of the use of stun guns by ordinary civilians.
From bulletproof vests to machine guns
Tasers will be included in the arsenal of employees of the federal state unitary enterprise Okhrana, which is part of the Russian Guard, the explanatory note to the document says. It is engaged in ensuring the security of industrial facilities, communications facilities, the Federal Reserve Agency, diplomatic missions, nuclear facilities, airports and some others. In addition to shockers, the draft order contains a solid list of weapons: from SKS carbines to MP-471S service pistols, submachine guns, body armor and special jammers for drones.
“The main subject of legal regulation of the submitted draft order is the approval of lists of types, types and models of combat hand-held small arms, service, civilian weapons and cartridges for them, special means and norms for providing them to employees of paramilitary and guard units of the Federal State Unitary Enterprise Okhrana of the Russian Guard, which can be used by employees when serving at posts and routes in order to carry out activities to protect objects and property of various forms of ownership, including objects to which private security activities do not apply, ”the explanatory note to the document says.
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Unreliable and dangerous?
But if everything is clear with the Russian Guard, then with stun guns for civilian use, everything is a little more complicated. According to the Law on Weapons, “electroshock devices and spark gaps of domestic production” are civilian weapons of self-defense. A special license for their purchase and carrying is not needed, the only condition is that the future owner must be 18 years old. However, there are a number of important nuances.
Firstly, stun guns for the purchase of civilians are allowed only domestic, from firms that have the appropriate license. Chinese, American and other imported models are illegal, for their purchase, and even more so for the use (especially if it results in serious consequences for the attacker – more on that below), you can get a fine or even go to jail.
Secondly, stun guns sold in Russia have their own gradation. The class of the device is determined by its power limit. For ordinary citizens, models with a power of no more than three watts are available. Everything above – up to ten watts – belongs to the category of service, only employees of law enforcement agencies have the right to purchase and use them.
Finally, thirdly, the stun gun itself is an extremely unreliable means of self-defense. Even experts, commenting on the feasibility of buying it, say bluntly: it’s better to buy a good gas canister.
“For the most effective impact, it is necessary to gain, let’s say, access to the body – the ability to act with electrical contacts directly on the skin and soft tissues of the attacker,” explained the deputy chairman of the Federal Council of the Civil Weapons Union in an interview with Parliamentary Newspaper. Rafail Ruditsky. “Accordingly, in the cold season, when people wear thick jackets, sweaters, hats, the effectiveness of the electroshock device will tend to zero.”
Another important point is that the impact, even short-term, of an electric current can not only disable a person, but also, if there are certain problems, for example with the heart, simply kill him. In this regard, stun guns, Rafail Ruditsky noted, often turn out to be even more dangerous than traumatic weapons.
As for the consequences that may come, if such an incident did happen, they, like everything else, are clearly described by the Criminal Code. Namely, Articles 114 and 108 “Intentional infliction of grievous or medium grievous bodily harm when the limits of necessary defense are exceeded” and “Murder when the limits of necessary defense are exceeded”, respectively. The maximum punishment they provide is up to two years in prison.
We defend carefully
We note, by the way, that a few years ago a fierce discussion was held in the State Duma on the topic of the limits of necessary self-defense. So, in 2022, the LDPR faction introduced a bill that would allow a person any self-defense in situations when it comes to an attack on his house or apartment. However, as the Deputy Chairman of the State Duma Committee on Security and Anti-Corruption told “Parliamentskaya Gazeta” Anatoly Vybornynow any discussion on it is curtailed.
“You see, there is a big difference: say, when a criminal with a knife or a teenager breaks into a person’s house to steal a can of canned food or a piece of bread,” the parliamentarian explained. — In our opinion, excessive detailing is dangerous here. Therefore, the current legal norms are of a general nature, and we fully rely on the emerging practice of the Supreme Court. If we realize that it is starting to falter, then, of course, the legislation can and will need to be adjusted. But the current system works quite effectively.”