Alarming Racial, Disciplinary Data in Use of Force Report
Blacks make up only 8 percent of the population, but 41 percent of the subject in use of force incidents, says Fairfax County Police report.
By Skip Wood (Patch Staff) - July 19, 2016 7:18 pm ET
A study released Monday by the Fairfax County Police Department examining use of force by police shows that of of 539 such incidents examined in 2015, only one resulted in disciplinary action -- a verbal warning.
But the study, done in part because of the fatal shooting of John Greer by police while standing in the doorway of his home in 2013, also revealed a more eye-opening bit of data.
Namely, that black suspects accounted for 41 percent of the use-of-force incidents, compared to 52 percent being white and 4 percent being Hispanic.
Black residents make up just 8 percent of the county's population.
In a statement Tuesday, the police department noted, "The data sets are intended to engage a discussion between the great community we serve and the leadership of the Department as we continue to re-engineer our use of force training, policies, and culture."
Among other findings:
• Residents had no weapons in 98 percent of the incidents.
• Police fired a gun just once in the incidents.
• Physical contact was the most common type of force.
In the Greer case, former Fairfax cop Adam Torres was sentenced in June to a year in jail after pleading guilty to involuntary manslaughter.