Man shot by police taser denies violent struggle with his mother

Howden Road in Jedburgh.
Howden Road in Jedburgh.

A 20-year-old male has appeared from custody at Selkirk Sheriff Court accused of struggling violently with his mother and threatening to harm himself with a crossbow.

It follows an incident in Jedburgh’s Howden Road on Monday night, during which a police officer fired a taser – the first discharge of a taser in Scotland since new rules came into force this month which mean only specially-trained officers can use the electroshock weapons.

Jake Osborn pleaded not guilty to assaulting his mother Marie Travers at a house in Howden Road by pushing her onto a bed, placing a pillow over her face and struggling violently with her to her injury.

He also denied behaving in a threatening or abusive manner and pointing a crossbow at his chest and threatening to harm himself.

Osborn pleaded not guilty to further charges of obstructing police by climbing out of a window, running away and hiding from officers and possession of a knife in Blair Avenue, Jedburgh.

A trial date has been fixed for Jedburgh Sheriff Court on September 4 with an intermediate diet hearing on August 6.

Osborn was released on bail to an address in Deal, Kent, with a special condition not to enter his mother’s home in Howden Road, Jedburgh.

Police Scotland say the incident, as is standard procedure, has been referred to the Scottish Government’s Police Investigations and Review Commissioner.

Assistant chief constable Nelson Telfer, of the force’s specialist support unit, said:”Like our colleagues across the UK, we now have a limited number of local officers trained to use tasers in instances where there is believed to be an immediate threat to the safety of the public or the police.

“The creation of these Specially Trained Officers across our territorial divisions gives local commanders and control rooms additional options when protecting our communities, which may include a quicker response to incidents with Taser capabilities, where appropriate.”

It is the first time in Scotland a member of the 500 specially trained taser officers who became operational at the start of the month has been called into action.

In December 2017, in response to an increase in the number of incidents in which police officers were confronted by people with bladed weapons and an increase in assaults on officers, Police Scotland unveiled plans to equip around 500 local officers with tasers.

Training of these officers began in May and all are expected to be trained and operational by August 2018, being equipped with the Home Office-approved Taser X2.