Police say an officer Tased a woman who would not fall a knife; the family said they were the cutting of dandelions

This Friday, Aug. 10, 2018 photo released by the Murray County Jail, shows Martha Al-Bishara, 87, arrested.


A Georgia police chief is defending his officers from the decision to use a Taser to subdue an 87-year-old woman, who, he said, disobeyed their commands to drop a knife.

However, the family said that Martha Al-Bishara was simply cutting dandelions with a kitchen knife last week, and that the officers should have more patience.

Chatsworth police chief Josh Etheridge said he and two other officers on the scene used the “lowest use of violence” they could in dealing with the woman who does not meet the requirements.

“An 87-year-old woman with a knife still has the ability to hurt an officer,” he said. “In my opinion, it was the lowest use of violence, we could have used to simply stop the threat in time.”

The police got a 911 call on Friday from an employee of a local Boys and Girls Club who reported a woman with a knife, came outside and would not leave.

“She is old, so she can’t deny it, but yes,…” the employee said on the 911 recording. “It seems that they are walking around looking for something, such as vegetation mowing or something. There is a bag.”

The police said they found Al-Bishara and, after she refused to drop the knife, an officer deployed the stun gun.

Etheridge said he even tried to communicate with her by with his pocket knife and throws it on the ground.

Al-Bishara is charged with criminal trespass and obstructing an officer and released from prison in Murray County later in the day.

But Al-Bishara, the family said that the civil servants should have more patience.

“When three police officers could not cope with an 87-year-old woman, you might want to reconsider hanging up your badge,” said Solomon Douhne, the wife of the great-nephew.

Etheridge said the police was busy with an internal use-of-force review.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Paulina Dedaj is a writer/ reporter for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter @PaulinaDedaj.

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