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NCJ Number: NCJ 210296     Find in a Library
Title: Citizen Complaints About Police Use of Force
  Document URL: Text PDF 
  Agency Summary: Agency Summary 
Author(s): Matthew J Hickman Ph.D.
Corporate Author: Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)
US Dept of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
United States of America
Date Published: 06/2006
Page Count: 8
  Series: BJS Special Reports
  Annotation: This report presents data on citizen complaints about police use of force received by large, general purpose State and local law enforcement agencies, as well as on complaint dispositions.
Abstract: Findings presented are from new questions on formal citizen complaints about police use of force added to the Law Enforcement Management and Administrative Statistics survey. Detail is presented on the policies and procedures of large municipal police departments relating to the processing of citizen complaints and other administrative features. The report also discusses the limitations of complainants’ data and the use of sustained complaints as a measure of police use of excessive force. Highlights include the following: (1) during 2002 large State and local law enforcement agencies, representing 5 percent of agencies and 59 percent of officers, received a total of 26,556 citizen complaints about police use of force; (2) about a third of all force complaints in 2002 were not sustained (34 percent), 25 percent were unfounded, 23 percent resulted in officers being exonerated, and 8 percent were sustained; and (3) using sustained force complaints as an indicator of excessive force resulted in an estimate of about 2,000 incident of police use of excessive force among large agencies in 2002. Tables
Main Term(s): Complaints against police
Index Term(s): Citizen grievances ; Police legal limitations ; Police statistics ; Lawful use of force ; Professional misconduct ; Police use of deadly force ; Complaint processing ; Public Opinion of the Police ; Police-citizen interactions ; Police discipline
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America

Justice Statistics Clearinghouse/NCJRS
P.O. Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Type: Statistics
Country: United States of America
Language: English
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