Tragically, in America, the domestic security force we are forced to pay for, also known as police, kill more people than any other police force on the planet. The numbers that are released publicly are staggering, however, according to a new study, they are actually far worse.
The study, conducted by the University of Washington and published in the British medical journal, The Lancet, found that police killings in America have been undercounted by more than half over the past four decades.
Researchers at UW compared the government’s numbers from the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS) with the open source work at nonprofit groups like Fatal Encounters, Mapping Police Violence, and The Counted. What they found was shocking — the government is not counting police killings nearly as close as private citizens are.
The study found that the NVSS data undercounted police killings by 55.5 percent between 1980 and 2018. Overall, according to the researchers, “the misclassification of police violence in NVSS data is extensive.”
According to an analysis of the study by the NY Times, the “findings reflect both the contentious role of medical examiners and coroners in obscuring the real extent of police violence, and the lack of centralized national data on an issue that has caused enormous upheaval. Private nonprofits and journalists have filled the gap by mining news reports and social media.”