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Colo. cop on leave after using TASER on students

Students say they asked deputy to shock them with TASER

Denver Post

LAKE COUNTY, Colo. — A Lake County sheriff's deputy used a TASER on about 30 high school students Thursday morning during a career fair on the playground of Lake County High School in Leadville.

The TASER was applied to the students' legs, and some suffered burns of varying degrees. At least one student was treated for burns at the St. Vincent General Hospital emergency room in Leadville.

The hospital refused to comment on the number of students treated or the severity of the injuries. Deputy John Ortega, who has been with the department since August 2008, was immediately suspended for one week without pay, Sheriff Ed Holte said. District Attorney Mark Hurlbert dispatched investigators to the school to determine whether criminal charges should be filed. School principal Cathy Beck said the students were offered the chance to be TASERed.

"We (the administration) had no idea this was going on," Beck said. "This is very unfortunate. I'm sorry the sheriff's office thought that it was appropriate. We don't think it was appropriate."

Read full story: Deputy uses TASER on Leadville students, apparently at their request

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