skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 75317 Find in a Library
Title: Beyond Account - The Personal Impact of Police Shootings
Journal: Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science  Volume:452  Dated:(November 1980)  Pages:145-156
Author(s): J VanMaanen
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 12
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The consequences of a shooting of a citizen by a police officer are felt and acted upon at several levels of police organizations, producing a number of reports which differ in detail according to the audiences for which they are produced.
Abstract: Official, collegial, and individual versions of a particular shooting often contrast in both form (external, internal, or private) and content (representation, symbol, or feeling). Based on commitment to the police role and social position within a department, an officer will attempt to build an account for a shooting that will protect his or her sense of self as shaped by the relationships he or she has with professional colleagues and the organization. Because shootings are to a degree 'routine matters' within many police agencies, especially large ones, individual accounts are worked out in line with mutually held background understandings of what constitutes proper police conduct before, during, and after a shooting. This is not so much a matter of constructing a coverup for wrongdoing as producing a comprehensible report. That such accounts are only partial indicators of the actual circumstances of the shootings is a point well understood by the police. Eleven footnotes are included, as are actual accounts of shootings and personal reactions to them produced for different audiences. For related articles, see NCJ 75304. (Author abstract modified)
Index Term(s): Police reports; Police use of deadly force
Note: *This document is currently unavailable from NCJRS.
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.