This is… unexpectedly awesome. As it’s been said, “That which gets measured, gets managed.” Hopefully better data about law enforcement officers’ use of force will lead us to less of it.
“We are responding to a real human outcry,” said Stephen L. Morris, assistant director of the FBI’s Criminal Justice Information Services Division, which oversees the data collection. “People want to know what police are doing, and they want to know why they are using force. It always fell to the bottom before. It is now the highest priority.”
The FBI’s efforts follow a year of national focus on fatalities and injuries at the hands of police, with widespread frustration over the lack of reliable data on the incidents.
Morris said the data will also be “much more granular” than in the past and will probably include the gender and race of officers and suspects involved in these encounters, the level of threat or danger the officer faced, and the types of weapons wielded by either party.
The data also will be collected and shared with the public in “near real-time,” as the incidents occur, Morris said, instead of being tallied in aggregate at the end of each year.