Taser disguised as torch seized as man is arrested at Sunderland club after families feared for their children

Police discovered this innocent looking torch was actually a Taser after they were called to a Sunderland club over fears about a suspicious man.

Friday, 16th July 2021, 2:18 pm

Northumbria Police was called to Ryhope Village and District Club after it was reported the man could be in possession of an offensive weapon, leading families to grow concerned with a number of children present.

Officers swiftly found the man in question and when searching the suspect, found him to be in possession of what looked to be a normal black torch.

But on closer inspection, it was found to be a Taser capable of inflicting painful but non-lethal injuries.

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This Taser disguised as a torch was seized after police were called to a bar in Ryhope Village following concerns a man was acting suspiciously.

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A 44-year-old man was arrested on suspicion of possessing an offensive weapon and the item was seized.

Officers have now praised the member of the public who reported the suspicious activity and helped take a potentially harmful weapon off the streets.

Detective Inspector Andy Richardson said: “This seizure was only possible because a member of the public spotted a man acting suspiciously and did the right thing.

“Fearing he may be in possession of a weapon, in full view of children, they alerted us and that allowed us to get officers to the scene within a matter of minutes.

“This Taser could have caused substantial injury and it is concerning that it had been disguised as an every-day torch.

"I’d like to thank the officers at the scene who made the discovery and followed their instinct.

“It is absolutely unacceptable to carry any kind of weapon and an investigation is ongoing into the circumstances surrounding this discovery.

“We are committing to taking robust action against anybody found in possession of a weapon and are pleased that we have been able to take this off the streets and out of harm’s way.”

The man arrested has since been released on police bail and inquiries are ongoing into Sunday’s incident.

Anyone who sees anything suspicious is asked to report it to the force by contacting it via the Tell Us Something page of its website or by calling 101.

In an emergency, or if a crime is taking place, always ring 999.

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