Police killings have received a lot of attention in the last decade.
New research allegedly shows cops were responsible for one in 20 homicides.
The number of deaths was the highest since Mapping Police Violence began tracking them.
The data doesn’t take all factors into account.
(NewsReady.com) – There is a bipartisan effort in Congress to implement changes to policing around the country. The movement sprung up in the wake of George Floyd’s murder by officers working for the Minneapolis Police Department. Senator Tim Scott (R-SC) led the negotiations for the Republicans but wasn’t able to get a law passed because Democrats were being too extreme.
A recent report revealed shocking statistics about homicides in America and the people who allegedly perpetrated the crimes. However, there are some issues with the data.
Homicides Attributed to Police
The prominent website Mapping Police Violence has been tracking police killings since 2013. According to the website, 1,192 people were killed by law enforcement officers in 2022. That accounted for 5% of all the homicides in the country.
The website alleges more people were killed by police last year than any other since the nonprofit organization began tracking the deaths. Thirty-five percent of the fatal incidents were carried out by county sheriff’s departments, an increase over the previous years.
Chicago saw an 86% decrease in the number of fatal police killings, while Atlanta saw a 500% increase. Black people are allegedly three times more likely to die at the hands of law enforcement. Additionally, the data showed 98.1% of the killings do not result in criminal charges.
Can The Data Be Trusted?
Mapping Police Violence purports to be a nonpartisan database. Its website claims that it publishes the “most comprehensive and up-to-date data on police violence” in the country. While it is supposed to be unbiased, even the description of the site seems to contradict that, as it calls the fatal encounters “police violence” without any nuanced explanation of the deaths.
The “Data and Methodology” tab on the page further delves into the issues the site has. The definition of “police violence” on the site includes all instances of police using lethal force, including the deaths that are justified. In other words, if a suspect shoots an officer and their partner kills the suspect, it’s still added to the website and described as “police violence.” Incidents of “suicide by cop” are also counted in the tally. When a cop uses a vehicle to stop a suspected criminal, and it results in a fatality, those deaths are put on the list as well.
Further, off-duty cops who kill a civilian, no matter the reason, are also added to the list. While the data is certainly comprehensive, some might argue it’s far from unbiased.
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