Quick thinking, expert training and the controversial rollout of Tasers across the ACT police cohort likely saved a second death from occurring in the streets of Page on Saturday morning.
Senior Constable Troy Roberts, who now works with the Australian Federal Police association after a lengthy operational career in the ACT, said that if those first responding officers to the bloody crime scene had not been equipped with Tasers when they were allegedly rushed at by a frenzied, knife-wielding assailant, the outcome would have been very different.
"Before Tasers were rolled out to all operational police in the ACT a few years ago, those officers would have had every right to draw their Glock [pistols] and there most likely would have been another dead person in that street that morning," Senior Constable Roberts said.
"So it has to be acknowledged that those Belconnen patrol officers not only followed their training, but they used a Taser as it is intended; to drop the offender with the knife, disarm him and place him under arrest.
"Just a few years ago, before Tasers were rolled out across ACT Policing, the outcome would most likely have been very, very different."
Three days on from Saturday's bloody homicide in Page and forensic crime scene investigators are still removing large brown padded bags sealed with evidence tape, and both detectives and uniforms are still on scene.
On Saturday, it was the scene of a blood-soaked homicide in which a 34-year-old man is dead, suspected to be from stab wounds although police won't confirm this detail, and three others in hospital with what police described as "significant wounds".
One of those badly wounded and in hospital is the alleged assailant, a 36-year-old man.
A quiet Saturday morning shift turned frantic when the first responding patrol arrived to find a man on a Braine St front lawn, bleeding profusely.
As the officers rendered first aid, that's when they were allegedly rushed at, and had to make some quick decisions.
"This is a pretty good reminder of the risks of everyday policing; here's what appears to be a quiet Saturday morning shift, a radio call comes in to attend probably what seems like a nothing job and suddenly, you're in hell," Senior Constable Roberts said.
ACT's head of crime, Detective Superintendent Scott Moller described it as "a terrible scene".
Police can only offer scant detail because all the key witnesses are still sedated and unable to be formally interviewed.
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