Taser sales increase in WNY after gun regulations increase
BUFFALO, N.Y. — Self-defense is top of mind for a lot of people in today’s climate. But in New York state, strong gun laws might keep firearms from being someone’s top choice and that’s why many are turning to Tasers instead.
An attacker can be put down with just one pop from a Taser.
“There’s 50,000 volts going through those lines right now,” said Greg Korduba, a Tasers instructor for Tac Blue Solutions. “You simply cannot move your muscles and then you fall to the ground.”
Your target is immobilized, but not mortally wounded.
“It’s easy to put in your purse. It’s not lethal if you need to use it,” said Judy Horvatits, a new Taser owner. “I hope I never need to use it.“
Horvatits got her first Taser back in May.
“As we get older we realize we’re not Wonder Woman anymore and we’re vulnerable,” she said. “This gives me a feeling of safety and that I have an option if I need to use it.”
She’s not alone.
Taser instructor Greg Korduba says he’s seen a 200% boost in business over the past few months, from business owners and attorneys to joggers and dog walkers.
“Almost every place is now prohibited: schools, businesses, shopping malls, grocery stores. You can no longer take your handgun there,” he explained. “So people are looking for a defensive option.”
Ranging from $350 to $600, these Tasers fire prongs at a target up to 15 feet away.
They shock for 30 seconds.
“You don’t have to wait until the attack is right in your face,” Korduba said.
Tasers are a bit of a grey area in New York state. A 2019 federal case ruled Taser bans unconstitutional, but the ban still remains in state law.
“Right now, New York State Police and other police agencies in New York are not enforcing any stun gun or Taser law,” Korduba said.
When compared to other self-defense methods, like pepper spray, Korduba points out that this will knock someone out as opposed to just distracting them. Tasers are also more of a directed defense method.
“It’s a little bit better than pepper spray because it has a greater range,” Korduba explained. “It does not get blown around in the wind like pepper spray.”
You have to be over 18 and not a felon to buy one. There are serial numbers on each unit and cartridge tied to the owner.
While you don’t need training, it’s highly recommended so you can learn about the device, its limitations, and how to use them legally. It takes about an hour and a half.
“Criminals are there to victimize people. They’re not there to fight people. If they have to fight people, they could get injured and if they get injured, they then become the food for their fellow criminals,” Korduba said.
That’s enough for people like Horvatitis to feel secure.
“I’m not overly aggressive, but I think it would do the trick when and if I need to use it,” she said. “And I would not hesitate to.”
There is a bill in the New York State Senate that would limit Taser possession to a person’s home or business. For the past three sessions, it has not made it out of the committee.