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July 22nd, 2016 at 5:04 PM

In the Crossfire

(Graphic: Jesse Howe | Flatland)
(Graphic: Jesse Howe | Flatland)

Just this week, the New York Times detailed a study finding that police are more likely to rough up blacks than whites, meaning tactics like cuffs, pepper spray, and forcing the suspect against a wall.  However, it also found no racial bias in lethal force, the deadly shootings we’ve come to rally around.

The graphic below doesn’t speak to the heart of current tensions — that blacks are disproportionately victims of unprovoked police killings — but it is an overview of where we stand today. And where we stand is here: The U.S. lacks comprehensive data on officer-to-citizen interactions.

We found that it’s the media, not government agencies, keeping the closest tab on use of police force. The Washington Post’s comprehensive Fatal Force database doesn’t, however, list officer deaths. Another newspaper calculated the percent increase from this time last year following the Dallas, Texas shootings.

The harrowing part? Deaths on both sides continue to rise.


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