Police Taser leaves suspect dead


A suspected drunk driver is dead after a Moberly police officer used a Taser on him. It happened just after 12:30 a.m. Thursday in Moberly.

23-year-old Stan Harlan died after a Moberly Police officer used a Taser on him twice early Thursday morning when police suspected he was driving drunk and resisted arrest.

"I haven't heard of anything like this around here, ever, and this community is in shock, said Eric Brewer, a friend of Harlan's..

It all happened along the 500 block of South Williams in downtown Moberly. Police say they were able to get one handcuff on Harlan before he resisted. They first shocked him for five seconds, but police say Harlan still wouldn't give up the other arm, so they used the device again for another second.

"Our officers followed policy exactly, said Moberly Police Commander Kevin Palmatory.

Palmatory says that not only did the officers do the right thing, Moberly Police classify Tasers in the same category as pepper spray.

"He had not been searched, he only had one cuff on his wrist and when a person has only one cuff on their wrist, that handcuff during a struggle can become a very dangerous weapon, said Palmatory.

Police were then able to get handcuffs on both of Harlan's wrists, but while they were waiting for Harlan to be transferred, he stopped breathing and was later pronounced dead.

"Stan was a good old American boy and to have this happen, it really hits us hard, said Brewer. We lost a good friend today."

Moberly police have handed over the rest of any investigation to the State Highway Patrol. Friday afternoon the agency is saying there are no updates on their investigation. It says there is no timetable for when results may emerge.

The Boone County Medical Examiner's office says the initial examination does not show how Harlan died. The examiner says the body is still being analyzed and final results will available in the next two to four weeks.


Police say a 23-year-old suspected drunk driver is dead after an officer fired a Taser at him during a traffic stop in Moberly.

Moberly police say Stanley James Harlan was pronounced dead at a hospital after the incident at 12:30 a.m. Thursday.

Police Commander Kevin Palmatory said the officer who made the stop suspected Harlan was driving drunk and placed him under arrest. He said when Harlan resisted, the officer deployed his Taser twice in an effort to subdue him.

Palmatory said moments later Harlan became unresponsive and officers started CPR until paramedics arrived and tried to revive him.

Moberly police have asked the Missouri State Highway Patrol's Division of Drug and Crime Control to investigate.

An autopsy is scheduled for Thursday afternoon.