One minute Scott Barber was sitting peacefully on the pavement of a Brunswick Street intersection holding a protest sign, the next his body was zapped with a stun gun by a member of the Halifax Regional Police riot squad.
"I was shot by two guns on two separate times," Mr. Barber said.
"It felt like I was getting shocked; it hurt a lot where they touched me and then it hurt less as it went out into the rest of my body."
The stun gun, commonly called by its brand name Tazer, was among the many weapons officers used Saturday afternoon to control about 300 demonstrators who gathered to protest the G-7 finance ministers meeting in Halifax.
Several people, including members of the media, witnessed the incident.
"We did have a report from one of the other media people that a Tazer had been deployed at one of the locations away from the Metro Centre and that's something that's being looked into at this time," Halifax Regional Police spokesman Sgt. Don Spicer said Saturday evening.
"That's just a rumour right now," RCMP spokesman Sgt. Wayne Noonan added.
At one point it looked as if Mr. Barber had passed out, but he said he just didn't want to have many body parts sticking out to get hurt.
He described the shock as more intense than the kind of electric shock that used to be used for therapy in large institutions.
"I felt that before," Mr. Barber said.
"I told them (police) I will never forget what happened."
Born of a Canadian mother, Mr. Barber, who lived in the United States until he was 15, said he was not surprised by police treating people in this manner.
"I watched the demonstrations and things in the 1960s about peace and civil rights and as far I consider this is the same war, the same battles that we're fighting for.
"We're fighting for human rights, for equality where people have an equal opportunity, where some people are not so rich that they can run everyone else's lives and then other people like me are waiting for two weeks until the damn food bank will let me get some more."
Mr. Barber said he's had no success finding work but he's been looking.
He suggested some of the officers who used force on Saturday were willing to give up their principles for the sake of a job.
That action came after about a dozen people knelt down on Brunswick Street in front of police.
At times shoving the demonstrators with shields, Halifax Regional Police and RCMP riot squads forced them to move north along Brunswick Street until the majority were standing on the grass of Citadel Hill.
The crowd later made its way through downtown before ending the rally.
FAIR USE NOTICE: This page contains copyrighted material the use of which has not been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. NoNonsense English offers this material non-commercially for research and educational purposes. I believe this constitutes a fair use of any such copyrighted material as provided for in 17 U.S.C § 107. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond fair use, you must obtain permission from the copyright owner, i.e. the media service or newspaper which first published the article online and which is indicated at the top of the article unless otherwise specified.