Police forces in the United States have been issued with Tasers since 1999 to subdue violent criminals. A pistol-like civilian version aimed at the self-defense market has been available since 1994.
But the new, lighter, brighter designer version, which was launched in late July with a price tag of around $350, is small enough to tuck into a purse and packs the same paralyzing punch.
But some of the nation's top police authorities are concerned that the gadgets could easily wind up in the wrong hands. Amnesty International also is opposed, saying it can pose "serious harm" for women.
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