An 11-year-old girl was accused of shoplifting. An off-duty officer Tasered her in the back.

WASHINGTON — It is not yet clear what threat the 11-year-old girl may have posed to the off-duty officer as she walked away from him. Or how many steps she took before he unholstered his Taser.

The officer had suspected the 11-year-old of shoplifting Monday at a Kroger in northern Cincinnati, where he worked another job.

He commanded her to stop.

She didn’t, authorities later said.

Then he deployed his Taser and shocked her in the back.

The incident prompted an investigation and landed the officer on ‘‘restricted duty,’’ Cincinnati Police Chief Eliot K. Isaac said.

‘‘We are extremely concerned when force is used by one of our officers on a child of this age,’’ Isaac said.


The department’s use-of-force policy allows using the disabling weapon on suspects between the ages of 7 and 70. But the policy also spells out when officers should avoid it.

‘‘An individual simply fleeing from an officer, absent additional justification, does not warrant the use of the TASER,’’ the policy reads.

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