A Greene County media man was tasered for a good cause Friday — a scholarship for students studying law enforcement.
The fundraiser began in April when 10 volunteers from the community agreed to be tasered for the cause, with donors then voting with their dollars for each volunteer. In the end, Andy McGinn, editor of the Jefferson Herald newspaper, drew the greatest number of votes at $337.30.
A grand total of $762.94 was raised by the fundraising taser campaign, with all proceeds supporting the Greene County Peace Officers Association scholarship fund for a student studying law enforcement.
“Thank you to all who participated,” said Jefferson Police Department Captain Heath Enns. “The money raised will be put to good use in our community.”
Enns, the Jefferson Police Department’s taser instructor, organized the demonstration. He said tasering is a “common practice,” and anyone healthy enough could participate in the event. Prior to the start of fundraising, all the volunteers were required to sign a waiver from Axon Enterprise Inc., formally Taser International, the manufacturer of the electro-shock weapons.
McGinn was tasered at 4 p.m. Friday in front of the Greene County Law Enforcement Center in Jefferson. The tasering was originally planned for halftime of the Greene County High School home football game against Saydel Friday night, but the school district’s insurance company requested the event not occur on school property for liability reasons.
The local newsman was the object of many jokey and encouraging comments prior to his zapping. A crowd of about 50 gathered to witness the voluntary pain.
“That’s the longest five seconds I’ve ever lived through,” McGinn said following the demonstration, which involved shooting him with twinned darts, each attached by a wire to a power source, and then carefully removing the darts from his immobilized body.
Also participating in the event were the Greene County Sheriff’s Office, Iowa State Patrol, Jefferson Volunteer Fire Department and the Greene County EMS.