STORY: Police were called to the Yallambee aged care home in Cooma, about 300 km southwest of Sydney, on Wednesday (May 17) after staff found resident Clare Nowland outside her room holding a steak-knife, said assistant commissioner Peter Cotter at a press conference.
Two officers spoke with Nowland for several minutes but when she failed to drop the knife and approached them, one fired a taser, knocking her to the ground.
"She was approaching police but it is fair to say at a slow pace. She had a walking frame, but she had a knife," Cotter said.
"If she was confused, which is what happens with people who have dementia, she needed kind words and assistance and help," said community advocate Andrew Thaler, calling the use of a taser "absurd".
The officer who fired the taser was off duty pending a "level 1 critical incident investigation", a category police reserved for exceptional cases where injuries lead to death or imminent death.