BJS: Bureau of Justice Statistics

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Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)
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FAQ Detail
Does the ARD program include deaths resulting from any use of force by state or local law enforcement personnel?

Yes. The ARD collection includes all deaths that result from any use of force by law enforcement officers, regardless of whether the officer intended the use of force to be lethal. To resolve an incident, law enforcement officers are authorized to use force in an escalating series of actions. The amount of force used ranges from the mere presence of an officer to the use of lethal force.

Most law enforcement agencies have policies that guide the appropriate level of force for a given situation. Law enforcement personnel are trained to only use lethal force when an arrest subject poses a serious threat to the officer or another individual and an arrest would be imminent. The threshold of criminal behavior to prompt an arrest is far lower than the threshold to prompt the use of lethal force.


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