National Police Misconduct Reporting Project

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 01-03-11

Here are the 17 reports of police misconduct tracked in our National Police Misconduct News Feed for Monday, January 3, 2011:

  • Rocklin CA police are accused of using excessive force by multiple witnesses who attended a New Years Eve party where officers were partially caught on video, seen above, beating a man with a baton after tasering him as he, according to witnesses, laid face down in a fountain and didn’t resist. Police claim he was resisting and fighting officers while being arrested for assaulting his girlfriend but his girlfriend and some witnesses are contradicting the police version of events and that he even assaulted the girl during an argument. [4]
  • Six Bethlehem PA cops are the subject of a lawsuit alleging that they falsely arrested a man after they were called to a domestic dispute that he wasn’t involved in and found a gun that wasn’t his in a car that didn’t belong to him. The man was later acquitted but not before being discharged from the National Guard. [3]
  • A Barre VT police officer has been arrested  cop arrested on charges including burglary, trespass and resisting arrest on allegations that he broke into a neighbor’s apartment and stole their brand new television from under their Christmas tree while he was drunk. When police arrived the box for the television was outside of the officer’s apartment door but he demanded that the officers get a warrant before searching his apartment… however, when officers left they claim they saw him trying to throw the TV off of his balcony and they later heard a splash. When asked about it the officer said he threw it because he didn’t want stolen property in his home… but the officer pled not guilty to a judge and then told reporters at the court that they better not mention his name. [0]
  • A Washington DC police officer was arrested on multiple charges including resisting arrest and reckless endangerment after he was caught on surveillance cameras brandishing his duty firearm after threatening bouncers with a bottle when they told him to leave as they were closing. The officer then ran away when police arrived. [1]
  • Seven Sanford FL police officers are under investigation and the department’s police chief was forced to retire almost a month ahead of schedule over allegations that officers were trying to protect the son of a police lieutenant by not arresting him after he was caught on video assaulting two people. [1]
  • An Ohio State trooper has been arrested on drunk and disorderly charges and criminal damaging charges in an unspecified incident during a Browns vs Steelers game at the Cleveland Browns stadium. UPDATE: Apparently he was arrested for allegedly becoming belligerent when officers confronted him about throwing peanuts at them. The property damage charge stems from him breaking a holding cell door by kicking it open, breaking the latch.  [2]
  • Two Miami-Dade FL police officers have been sentenced to prison for their roles in a drug dealer shakedown scheme. One of the officers was sentenced to 24 months in prison while the other recieved 21 months. [0]
  • A Marblehead OH police officer has been suspended after he was arrested for supplying a 19-year-old woman with alcohol in a motel room. However, he may also be facing sexual assault charges based on allegations being made by that woman. [1]
  • A Tampa FL police officer has resigned after he was caught having sex while on duty in his police cruiser at a city park. Police had him under surveillance after receiving several complaints about his behavior. [0]
  • An Indianapolis IN police officer has been suspended pending an investigation after witnesses reported seeing his cruiser being driven erratically while he was off-duty. While the department hasn’t come out and said it, the allegations appear to indicate that they suspect he was drunk and an investigator responding to the complaints took his badge and gun after interviewing him at his house. [2]
  • A Newton County GA deputy has been arrested on domestic violence related battery charges for a fight with an unspecified family member at a New Years Eve party. [1]
  • A Schenectady NY police officer has been charged on allegations that he falsely reported that there was a fight a bar on New Years when there wasn’t one. No word on why he allegedly did it. [1]
  • A US study released recently indicates that at least 42% of police officers who have been killed in vehicular accidents in last 30 years may have died because they weren’t wearing seat belts. It could not be determined if officers were or weren’t wearing seat belts in about  [0]
  • A Sandy Springs GA police officer has filed a racial discrimination and retaliation lawsuit against that department claiming, in part, that he was simply following instructions given to him by his superior officers when he had sex with women during a sting operation on a massage parlor, just like all his fellow officers were doing as well. But that when he documented what he did in his reports he was disciplined with a 2-day suspension without pay, unlike his fellow officers who are white who received no discipline for the same. [3]
  • And finally, our first quote of the week for this new year allegedly came from the Baltimore Maryland police commissioner’s spokesperson who, in a report that has since been rewritten, was quoted as saying that the kind of conduct by police officers that has cost the city over $7 million in civil litigation costs in the last 2 and a half years is not going to change when he was asked about it by a reporter after a press conference where the police chief and the mayor absolutely refused to answer similar questions. However, since the article publishing that quote has been completely rewritten, removing that alleged quote, there’s no way to know for sure if that’s what he really said… though it seems to be a pretty accurate assessment based on how officials are completely refusing to discuss the issue. [2]

That’s it for today, stay safe out there.

Police Misconduct NewsFeed Weekend Recap 01-01-11 to 01-02-11

First, as you may have noticed we have the Donation button back in high-prominence, this means we’re in desperate need of help again. (when I say desperate I mean we’ll have to shut down for lack of funds between 01/07/11 and 01/15/11 unless we get serious donations soon) If you can afford to donate it is greatly needed and much appreciated. Hopefully I’ll find more work soon and will be able to take the donation request down again then.

With that said, here are the 6 reports of police misconduct tracked in our National Police Misconduct News Feed for this first weekend of 2011:

  • Des Moines Washington police have released dashcam videos and audio of officers shooting someone’s pet Newfoundland along with the reports associated with the investigation that cleared the officers. In the video marked as being from police unit 521 you can hear the first gunshot at 14:18:44 followed by an officer shouting “niiice” shortly after the shot. Police say the dog was aggressive though Newfoundlands are known as a non-aggressive breed and, from the audio, it didn’t sound like they were too concerned about being attacked. I can’t embed the videos, but they’re all available for download here along with related PDFs from the investigation. This report is already in our database from 2010 so this won’t result in an update to our data, but it seemed important enough to mention. [0]
  • A Jackson Mississippi police officer apparently dropped his gun, causing it to discharge and apparently hit an unarmed man as he turned to run away. Officers arrived in the area reportedly in response to a shots fired call but the person they approached wasn’t involved. He was still charged with possession of marijuana and resisting arrest though. [1]
  • An unspecified number of East St Louis Illinois police officers are suspected of participating in a “blue flu” work stoppage when almost an entire shift called off sick an hour before they were due into work on New Years Eve. The union insists they really were sick because of stress related to council voting to lay off 16 officers combined with the recent change in weather. Department officials seem pretty wishy-washy about the whole thing. [2]
  • An Albany Georgia police officer has been suspended after being arrested by a Lee County deputy for illegally discharging his firearm to celebrate the new year. [0]
  • A Medical College of Georgia police officer has been arrested on drunk driving and hit & run charges in an unspecified incident… and yes, just about every organization seems to have their own sworn police force these days. [0]

In addition to the reports tracked for this first weekend of 2011 there are two other reports that weren’t in the news feed for unrelated reasons.

First, a disturbing video of a no-knock raid performed by the Weber-Morgan Narcotics Strike Force in Utah and an associated article describing more details on how that raid didn’t conform to standard planning practices may prompt the family of a man who was shot to death during that raid to file suit.

The multi-agency task force decided to rush into performing a raid on a home they suspected housed a meth dealer in September of 2009. However, the raid only turned up a small amount of marijuana by one account or a small amount of an unidentified substance according to a different report. Needless to say, it appears as though their target wasn’t a dealer but, at most, an addict who died with $4.00 in his possession.

If you watch the video below, which is graphic and depicts the shooting itself, think about how much time the man was given to comply with commands, the distance between him and the heavily armed and armored officers, and whether it appears as though he’s advancing or stationary… then keep in mind that the police and prosecutors have all ruled this raid and shooting as justified.

Again, a warning, the following video is graphic and disturbing.

We didn’t include it in the news feed because it belongs in 2010′s data but I did put it straight into the database as a raid-related incident with an allegation status since the family alleges it was unjustified and it appears as though they may file suit.

Next, a man who claims to be a regular contributor to CNN’s iReport program is seeking to have his video, shown below, plastered everywhere he can get it and posted links to it a number of times on our Facebook page and several other places insisting that it shows a Marinette County Wisconsin deputy violating his rights while he was trying to film the scene of a house fire he came across.

I’m not going to say what I think of this one, I want to see what opinions our readers have first. What do you think?


So far, after 93 votes, the tally is:

  • 34% say yes
  • 46% say no
  • 19% don’t know

That’s it for today, stay safe out there!

The Worst Police Misconduct Videos of 2010

The polling is closed and the results of our reader’s votes have been tabulated in our Worst Police Misconduct Videos of 2010 Reader’s Poll.

This is the second year that we’ve run this poll here at this site and the third year that it has run overall. Each year we do this we don’t post every single videotaped instance of police misconduct out there because, well, many people don’t have the bandwidth to load that many videos on a single page and it’s very difficult to keep track of them all. In fact, this year, at least two potential candidate videos came out shortly before our polling ended.

While it’s important to remember that these are not all of the police misconduct related videos that were released in 2010, videos are rarely released in association with an incident of police misconduct. In fact, out of the over 5,000 reports we tracked, only a little over 200 of those reports had known video associated with the incident and, of those 200, only a little over 50 of those videos were released to the public. So it’s important to understand that, while the videos are horrific, they are not necessarily representative of the worst cases of police misconduct overall.

I know it’s a lot of me to ask our readers to view all of these videos and pick which one seems worst to them when all of them seem wrong in their own right. But I do think that it helps drive home that police misconduct happens anywhere, can happen to anyone, and it makes it far easier for people to put themselves in the shoes of a victim. This poll helps me understand public perspectives of police misconduct and helps bring more attention to the issue. It would be worse, I think, if they were just ignored or forgotten after they were originally released.

For those who are interested, the candidates that were voted on for 2010 are available for public review here. The Worst Videos of 2009 are here while the candidates used for that poll are available for review here.

With that said, here are the 5 worst police misconduct videos of 2010 as voted on by our readers:

5th Worst Video of 2010

This March 16, 2010 videotaped incident in Denver Colorado involved Denver Police officers John Diaz and Jeff Cook who were captured on video grabbing Mark Ashford and wrestling him to the ground while trying to take his camera from him after he had told a motorist they were giving a ticket to that he saw what happened and would testify on the motorist’s behalf that the ticket was wrong. Ashford, who was walking his dogs to the park at the time, had to be treated for a concussion and was arrested on interference and resisting arrest charges but those were dropped later. Last we knew the officers were still the subject of an investigation with no known disciplinary action taken against them. But it’s interesting to note that officer Diaz was the subject of a 2007 Denver Post report on how the Denver Police Department kept a tight reign on police records and mentioned Diaz as being disciplined for an honesty issue.

4th Worst Video of 2010

This March 3, 2010 incident in Prince George’s County Maryland was captured on surveillance cameras which contradicted police reports describing the arrest of University of Maryland student John J. McKenna during student celebrations after their team won a basketball game over Duke University. Police reports claimed the student was taken down and arrested after he assaulted a police horse but the video showed he was complying with commands to back up when riot-gear clad officers rushed him and repeatedly beat him with batons.

To date, three Prince George’s County Police officers; Reginald H. Baker, Anthony J. Cline and James Harrison Jr, remain on paid leave or modified duty for their alleged roles in the beating while a fourth officer, Sean McAleavey, was briefly suspended for writing the flawed report but was quickly returned to duty without punishment and it is unclear if he’s still the subject of an investigation that has just been taken over by the FBI.

3rd Worst Video of 2010

The video of this November 11, 2009 incident involving a Texas State Trooper was just released this year showing the officer slamming a handcuffed woman, 23-year-old Whitney Fox, face-first into a concrete highway retaining wall shortly after he reportedly told her that she was “fixing to get hurt” while he was arresting her on drunk driving charges after she had called police to report an accident she was involved in. The woman suffered facial lacerations and was never charged but the now-former state trooper, Arturo Perez, was charged and ultimately sentenced to 6 months of probation for misdemeanor assault.

2nd Worst Video of 2010

This February 11, 2010 videotaped raid on a Columbia Missouri family’s home was based on questionable information Columbia Missouri police received from a paid informant. That raid resulted in a family’s corgi and bull terrier being shot while a 7-year-old was nearby inside the home. The cops say they did the evening raid because they expected this guy to be some big dealer but all they found was a pipe with resin and a grinder. The couple was charged and took a plea deal for simple possession and child endangerment but the raid and backlash sparked a civil rights lawsuit listing 12 officers as defendants that is still pending as well as promised reforms from the department itself about how it conducts raids and performs investigative work prior to raids… even though the police chief initially reacted to the backlash by claiming “I hate the internet.” and still backs his officers who were not disciplined or found to have violated any departmental policies.

Worst Video of 2010

This August 30, 2010 incident in Seattle Washington was partially captured on dashcam video in which you can see Native American woodcarver John T. Williams walking across the street with a piece of wood and his legal-length carving knife before Seattle police officer Ian Burke exits his car and approaches Williams who was wearing headphones and was deaf in one ear. While both are out of visual range you can hear the officer ordering Williams to drop his knife and then, about four seconds later, five shots are heard, four of which fatally hit Williams in the back and the side.

Initial reports released from the police department insisted that the officer fired after Williams charged him with his knife but that version of events was quickly withdrawn after several witnesses contradicted that and said Williams didn’t even appear to hear the officer. Subsequent information released indicate that Williams’ knife might not have been opened at the time and an initial review of the incident ruled that the shooting was unjustified. Burke is still suspended pending an inquest scheduled to occur this month but Burke still insists he opened fire because he feared for his life. This incident was one of several occurring over the last few years that have sparked calls for a federal investigation into the department from multiple groups not associated with this project.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 12-31-10

We’re shutting down the feed early today as I don’t anticipate any new reports due to the holiday. I want to devote some time to my family and to start preparing the 5,000+ reports we’ve tracked in 2010 for statistical analysis.

Speaking of, I just want to quickly thank everyone for their support throughout this really difficult year. We’ve come close to becoming homeless and shutting down but we survived and we did it thanks to everyone’s help. From those who sent us links to reports they thought we missed to those who donated and kept us alive we thank you. Without you we wouldn’t have finished our first full year of operations. With a lot of luck, hopefully we can make it through the next year as well.

On behalf of the NPMSRP I wish everyone a happy and safe New Year and hope that the next year brings us all fewer hardships and fewer reports to track.

With that said, here are the final 3 reports of 2010 tracked today, New Years Eve of 2010, in our National Police Misconduct News Feed:

  • Honolulu Hawaii police are being accused of detaining a public access television news crew and injuring their producer in the process of ripping a camera out of her hands and smashing it on their vehicle when they were stopped for trying to record video of President Obama while he was on vacation in that state. [2]
  • The sheriff of Upshur County Texas, along with the county commissioner and a county judge, have been indicted by a grand jury on official oppression charges that stem from them banning all public commentary at county commission meetings and for kicking out one person who protested by taping his mouth shut. [0]
  • And finally, a Galveston County Texas deputy was arrested on drunk driving charges on the same night that the assistant District Attorney was arrested on DUI charges as well, all during a publicized DUI crackdown operation. [0]

That’s it for this year, stay safe out there and we’ll see everyone next year!

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 12-30-10

Here are the 13 reports of police misconduct tracked by our National Police Misconduct News Feed for this Thursday, December 30, 2010:

  • Four Hamilton County OH deputies are the subject of a lawsuit alleging they tasered a man seven times and severely beat him after they pulled over on a suspected DUI stop and dragged him out of his car. The suit further alleges they then falsely arrested him even after they discovered he wasn’t drunk but was a diabetic suffering from extremely low blood sugar. In this case, a state trooper arrived as the man was begging the deputies to stop and began pulling the deputies away from the man they were beating because he feared for the man’s life and then reported what happened as being a case of excessive force. As a result the four deputies were disciplined and the charges against the man were dropped. A portion of the incident was captured on the trooper’s dashcam as shown above. [1]
  • A Gadsen AL police officer and the Etowah County AL sheriff’s dept are the subject of a lawsuit alleging that the Gadsen police officer severely beat a man he arrested on DUI charges while he was cuffed at the jail and after he was informed by a jail nurse that he wasn’t drunk but a diabetic suffering from excessively high blood sugar. The suit goes on to allege that all of this was captured on video and that deputies at the jail did nothing to stop the assault as the man begged for help and suffered broken teeth and bones as well as several lacerations that required stitches. [3]
  • Quinton OK police claim they don’t know how a man they arrested on public intoxication, misdemeanor possession, and resisting arrest charges ended up with a blunt head injury that killed him three days later and now the FBI has launched an investigation into the death. [4]
  • Ecorse MI has been ordered by a judge to pay $215,000 to a family who sued over a violent wrong door drug raid that was intended for the home next door. [0]
  • A Lewis County MO deputy has been arrested on a statutory rape charge involving a 15-year-old girl he allegedly had sex with in July of last year. [2]
  • Sanford FL police are being investigated on allegations they were protecting a police lieutenant’s son by not arresting him even after a video came out showing him sucker punch a homeless man from behind without provocation, resulting in that man being hospitalized. A warrant for his arrest was finally filed today but not by the Sanford police. [3]
  • Three New Orleans LA police officers were arrested in one night in unrelated incidents. Two of the officers were arrested on drunk driving charges while the third was arrested for illegal use of a weapon related to a domestic violence incident. [0]
  • A Plattville WI police officer has been sentenced to 1 year in prison after pleading guilty to charges related to allegations she turned her home into a crack house and was doing crack while on-duty. [0]
  • A Lansing MI police officer has been charged with theft by false pretenses on allegations he intentionally drove off from a gas station without paying for gas and 2 bottles of wine. [0]
  • And finally, a Cincinnati OH police lieutenant has been transferred to the records department after he was caught having sex with his girlfriend in an unmarked cruiser that was parked at police headquarters. [0]

That’s it for today, stay safe out there.

NPMSRP In the Media

Just a brief note.

I was a guest on the Free Mind Report radio show last night and an archive of that show is available for listening here. I definitely thank them for having me on, I always appreciate the chance to talk about our project.

We were also featured the other day on the Hermis Live Show where I hear they had some very nice things to say about what we’re doing here. As I understand it that was thanks to mention from a new site called Guerrilla Lawfare which is focusing on teaching people about their rights and what to do when encountering the police. Thanks for the support guys!

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 12-29-10

Here are the 13 reports of police misconduct tracked in our National Police Misconduct News Feed for Wednesday, December 29, 2010:

  • An Owsley County KY deputy is the subject of a lawsuit and a federal investigation which may lead to charges on allegations that he beat a man in the face with a retractable metal baton, breaking his eye socket, and sprayed him with mace after he was cuffed in front of several witnesses then arrested him on false charges. Witnesses say the beating was unprovoked. [4]
  • Meanwhile, a Booneville KY police officer who was also at the event listed above is the subject of a federal and state investigation into allegations that he failed to stop that deputy from beating his victim and refused to assist him when he was injured. [3]
  • San Juan County WA settled a lawsuit for $75,000 to a woman who was tackled, tasered, and then arrested on false charges when she refused to allow deputies to search her home after they were called for a domestic disturbance and had arrived after the man involved had left. The search they performed anyway was deemed illegal and didn’t turn up any evidence of any crime. [0]
  • 118 people so far have filed claims to portions of a $3,000,000 settlement to a class action lawsuit involving alleged abused by the now-disbanded Minnesota Metro Gang Task Force that included illegal seizures of property, illegal searches, false arrests, and excessive force in addition to other allegations. The committee responsible for that task force comprised of officers from different agencies insists that a $3,000,000 settlement is not an admission of wrongdoing. [0]
  • A Franklin IN police officer has been charged with battery and official misconduct for groping a female informant’s genitals and calling another officer’s attention to her genital piercing in a disparaging manner while he was wiring her up for a sting operation. [0]
  • A Danville IN assistant police chief has pled guilty to battery charges for breaking into a house and assaulting his estranged wife’s boyfriend, injuring her in the process. [0]
  • A Providence RI police officer has received a suspended sentence after his no contest plea over his role in a drug ring that resulted in three other cops being indicted as well. [0]
  • A Forest City IA police officer has been fired over an unspecified on duty incident but officials won’t say why because his union has filed a grievance on his behalf. [0]
  • The police chief of Grantsville UT had to pay a fine after he pled guilty to a poaching charge for killing a deer on private property. I was on the fence about adding this one but I guess it was a criminal charge so it applies. [0]
  • And finally, an Illinois State trooper was sentenced to probation and a fine in a plea deal to a misdemeanor charge for lying on a report she filed about a motorist she stopped who had a suspended license that she let go without arresting. Her report falsely claimed that she allowed another person to drive the car when she let him go. [0]

That’s it for today, stay safe out there.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 12-28-10

One thing before I get into today’s reports.

I was saddened today to find out that Navin Sharma, a former Vancouver Washington police officer who endured retaliation for reporting misconduct he witnessed, died on Christmas Eve after a lengthy and brave battle with pancreatic cancer. We would write each other every now and then after I wrote about his case a few years ago and he would give me updates on the retaliation other officers suffered for testifying on his behalf about the abuses he suffered or just write to see how things were going. It was during one of those talks that he told me of his condition, but he bravely battled it, never complained, and asked me to keep it to myself. When people ask me if I think there really are any good cops, I think of officer Sharma, he wasn’t just a good officer, he was a really good person too. Remember, many of the reports we cover would never have made it to the light of day if it wasn’t for a honest and decent police officer who reported what happened and faced possible retribution for doing so… it happens more often than you think.

With that said, here are the 10 reports of police misconduct tracked in our National Police Misconduct News Feed for Tuesday, December 28, 2010:

  • Three Baltimore MD police officers are accused of excessive force when they beat an apparently innocent man then falsely arrested him on on resisting arrest charges. They allegedly followed that up by barging into another man’s home across the street from that incident and arrested him for witnessing what happened, but later released him without charging him. [5]
  • Two Portland OR police officers who have been accused of hospitalizing a man in an alleged excessive force incident that nearly killed him appear to have quite an extensive history of alleged misconduct including excessive force and even one incident where one of the officers tied a gorilla suit to the front of his cruiser while he was watching over a dance attended by minorities. [3]
  • Las Vegas Nevada police apparently broadcast a city-wide “officer safety alert” describing a man, his car, and detailing his name and address all because officers apparently saw him filming them while they were conducting an arrest. The man who recorded it also happened to record the police radio alert about himself as well and posted about it on a discussion board… since when was recording police an “officer safety” issue? [3]
  • Houston TX police have been forced by an arbitrator to rehire 1 of the seven officers who were fired recently after they were caught on video kicking and beating a 15-year-old burglary suspect long after he had given up and complied with commands. The arbitrator ruled that kicking a compliant suspect wasn’t sufficient grounds for dismissal and ordered the department to give him back pay as well. [0]
  • A Parkersburg WV police officer has been placed on paid leave after he was fired thanks to a civil employee review board that ruled stealing confiscated property and downloading porn on departmental computers wasn’t sufficient misconduct to merit being fired. The city is appealing the ruling calling it absurd. [0]
  • The police chief of Palm Springs CA has apologized for uttering homophobic slurs that he once claimed he didn’t utter during a sting operation targeting that was targeting members of the gay community for allegations of public sex. [3]
  • A Columbus NM police officer has been indicted on a stalking charge for sending disturbing cellphone images of him holding a gun to his mouth to his ex-girlfriend that he also allegedly harassed at her place of work. [0]
  • A Beaumont TX police lieutenant received a pre-trial diversion program in a deal that will wipe his drunk driving charges off his record after a year’s probation. [0]
  • And finally, the police chief of Perry UT has been charged with disorderly conduct on allegations that he verbally abused and threatened Walmart employees who asked to see his receipt as he was leaving the store because he had unbagged items in his cart. [0]

That’s it for today, stay safe out there.

A Premature Alarm Regarding Police Fatality Rates

The big law enforcement related news piece dominating the media today comes courtesy of a press release from the Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (LEOMF) insisting that an apparent increase in law enforcement officer deaths in 2010 in comparison to 2009′s record low number of officer deaths should be alarming and attributes the rise to a number of factors including reduced funding for law enforcement officers and increasingly violent criminals.

While we definitely do find it alarming when any law enforcement officer loses his or her life in an act of violence, we do feel it necessary to examine these numbers in order to put them into perspective, especially since the LEOMF and a professor from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice cited police accountability projects such as ours here at the NPMSRP as the reason for the rise in police officer deaths they claim they were seeing around mid-year.

Interestingly, in response to those wild allegations, we examined the alarming trend cited by the LEOMF in July and did some statistical analysis to determine what the actual homicide rate was for law enforcement officers and, surprisingly, our projected rate of officers who died in acts of homicidal violence ended up being pretty accurate.

Back then we determined that:

…in 2009 there were 127 line of duty deaths, of which, 57 of those fatalities could be attributed to an act of violence that specifically targeted a police officer whether by firearms, intentional vehicular assault, or assault.

So far in 2010, there have been 98 line of duty deaths, of which, 28 are attributed to an intentional act of violence against a police officer.

So, in 2009 the homicidal fatality rate for law enforcement officers was an estimated 8.14 deaths per 100,000 law enforcement officers. Currently the homicidal fatality rate is at 4.16 per 100,000 and, if projected to the end of year at the current rate, that homicidal fatality rate for 2010 would potentially be 8.31 per 100,000 law enforcement officers… a 0.17 per 100,000 increase or, roughly, a 2.1% increase.

The actual numbers cited by the LEOMF for 2010 are that 160 officers died and that 59 of those law enforcement officers died due to apparent homicidal causes for this year. This would translate to a homicide rate of 8.35 officers per 100,000 based on an estimated employment rate of 706,886 sworn law enforcement officers in the US per the latest FBI-DOJ UCR numbers released earlier this year.

So, the homicidal death rate for law enforcement officers in 2009 was 8.14 per 100,000 and the 2010 homicidal fatality rate was 8.35 per 100,000 which translates to a 2.5% increase in the homicide rate for police officers. If we use the numbers according to LEOMF sources in that there are 800,000 active sworn officers in the US, then the homicide rate drops to 7.38 per 100,000 but that 800,000 number cited does not seem to reflect a general decline in law enforcement employment rates that we’ve seen lately due to the declining economy.

So, in conclusion, yes, there has been an increase in deaths by homicidal violence for police officers in 2010 and any increase should be examined rationally to determine if there are prudent ways to address preventable deaths. But the increase seen for 2010 is not as alarming as we are told it should be and definitely not extensive enough from which one could derive any conclusive causative effect, such as blaming it on efforts to increase accountability and transparency within law enforcement agencies in the US as was done earlier this year.

While we do not track total officer-related fatalities, we do track fatalities associated with allegations of police misconduct or use of excessive force.

Per our latest projected 2010 statistical data we determined that, in comparison with the stated law enforcement homicidal death rate of 8.35 per 100,000, that the fatal use of excessive force rate for law enforcement in 2010 was 18.3 per 100,000 and the rate of officers officially charged with murder was 5.3 per 100,000 (compared to an estimated 4.9 per 100,000 murder rate by officers in 2009) as opposed to the murder rate for the general public which was 5.0 per 100,000 in 2009 per the latest UCR data available from the FBI DOJ.

However, these are just projections from our Q3 statistical data and our full 2010 statistical report won’t be released until sometime in mid to late January of 2011.

National Police Misconduct NewsFeed Daily Recap 12-27-10

Reports are still slow from the holidays but, anyway, here are the 7 reports we’ve tracked this Monday, December 27, 2010:

  • Wichita Kansas has settled a wrongful death suit for $300,000 to the family of a man who was killed when a police cruiser collided with his car while the officer was speeding without his emergency lights or siren activated. [0]
  • Four Portland Oregon police officers are being accused of using excessive force on a man who had to be hospitalized after he claims he was an innocent bystander when the officers took him to the ground, beat him, and tasered him three times including once in the neck on Christmas Eve when police were responding to a call about a fight at a club. The man is actually the second grandson of a local pastor involved in a questionable use of force case, the other was 15 when he was beaten and tasered between 6-12 times by police after he escaped from home even after his grandmother had informed police he was severely autistic. The man was in town from Arizona where he’s a straight A student studying sports medicine. [3]
  • Three South Bend Indiana police officers are accused of using excessive force on a man they dragged from a car when they suspected he was involved in a minor accident with a parked disabled truck that didn’t appear to have any damage. Police say they found the man passed out and he punched and kicked the officers when they tried to arrest him but witnesses who live in nearby homes claim the man never got up after cops drug him from his car and that they saw officers washing off large amounts of blood from their hands and boots after they beat and tasered the man several times. He suffered a facial fracture and doesn’t remember what happened. [3]
  • A Houston County Georgia deputy is the subject of a lawsuit filed by a man claiming the deputy used excessive force and when he tasered him for asking why his son was pulled over and then threatened to be tasered again when he complained of having chest pains. [3]
  • An Ohio State Patrol Lieutenant Colonel who was second in command has retired while he was under investigation into allegations that he interfered with an investigation into a trooper who was accused of having an inappropriate relationship with an underage girl. [0]
  • And finally, a Coral Springs Florida police officer was suspended for one week without pay over his arrest on drunk driving charges in Nevada, charges that were later dropped when prosecutors there failed to send their files to his defense attorneys within the time limit required. [1]

That’s it for today, stay safe out there!

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