VANCOUVER, British Columbia – A Canadian man died Saturday, four days after police used a Taser stun-gun on him because he reportedly was acting erratically in a store, police said. He was the third person to die in recent weeks in Canada after being shocked by the hand-held weapon.
Robert Knipstrom, 36, died in a hospital after two officers used pepper spray, a Taser and their batons to subdue the British Columbia resident. Police earlier said Knipstrom was extremely agitated, aggressive and combative with the two officers who responded. He was conscious and speaking when he was taken to the hospital.
The cause of death has yet to be determined. Although a Taser was used against Knipstrom, it was not immediately clear what role, if any, it played in his death, said Inspector Brendan Fitzpatrick.
Investigations into Knipstrom's death have been launched separately by the British Columbia Coroner's Office and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, police said at a news conference Saturday.
The case comes as Canadian police face intense criticism over the death of Robert Dziekanski, a Polish immigrant who died at Vancouver airport last month after officers used a Taser and manhandled him.
A Nova Scotian man also died earlier this week, 30 hours after being shocked with the Taser at a jail where he was being held on assault charges.