Bank heist suspect who was Tasered had guns: cops
The common-law wife of the robbery suspect who died shortly being after Tasered at his Langley, B.C., home, has been charged with one count of armed robbery.
A search of the home Tina Toffan, 35, shared with 49-year-old Frank Frachette has turned up an unloaded shotgun, replica handgun and a dye-pack -- all believed to have been used during a heist at the Langley Royal bank Tuesday.
Police also found a large amount of cash they say is consistent with the amount taken during the robbery.
Officers jolted Frachette with a Taser at least once outside his home on 47A Avenue as police attempted to apprehend him Tuesday afternoon.
The naked and bleeding man had just crashed through a second-storey window and was trying to run back into the house when police deployed the Taser.
He died a short time later.
Police have not indicated how Frachette died but say an autopsy confirms he was suffering from deep stab wounds to the chest when he crashed through the window.
RCMP Cpl. Peter Thiessen said using the conductive energy weapon was a split-second decision and considered appropriate because the man was thought to be armed and a threat to his partner inside the home.
"They [police] made this decision because it was thought to be in the best interests of the public and the officers involved,'' he said.
B.C. police have come under fire recently for using Tasers.
Last week, Vancouver police defended their use of a Taser stun gun on a teenage mom, saying officers took the action to save the life of a critically ill one-month-old baby.
More than 70 Canadian police forces currently use Tasers, which were approved in December 2001 by Giuliano Zaccardelli, who was commissioner of the Mounties at the time.
Since then, the stun guns have been indirectly linked to about 20 deaths, and Zaccardelli has publicly stated that Tasers should be decommissioned.
With files from The Canadian Press