Former SEPTA transit officer charged for alleged excessive use of Taser

A former SEPTA transit police officer is facing charges after he deployed his Taser on a passenger and then reengaged it several times without providing them the opportunity to comply with verbal orders to exit the bus, according to prosecutors.

Floyd Whitaker, 59, of Laurel Springs, N.J., is charged with simple assault, unlawful use of an incapacitation device, recklessly endangering another person and official oppression.

The Philadelphia District Attorney's Office said the incident happened on April 12, 2021, around 4 a.m. at the Frankford Transportation Center when a SEPTA driver called for assistance with a disruptive passenger.

Officer Whitaker responded to the scene and is alleged to have discharged his Taser into the passenger.

"I want to thank the SEPTA Transit Police for their work in this investigation, and for helping to ensure that accountability for serious and violent crime applies to everyone," District Attorney Larry Krasner said. "Any incident in which violent force is used by law enforcement against a civilian should be carefully reviewed to ensure integrity within the criminal justice system. My office continues to work with our partners in law enforcement to seek accountability for serious and violent crime, and to build trust with members of the public we serve every day." 

Whitaker was placed on administrative duty following the April 12 incident. Criminal and SEPTA Transit Police Internal Affairs investigations were launched immediately after the incident. Whitaker, who had been a SEPTA Transit Police officer for 24 years, surrendered to SEPTA Transit Police Monday morning on an arrest warrant that was issued late last week.



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