Police Use of Force
Our officers are required to complete a Use of Force report every time they use any sort of physical force on a subject beyond standard and/or justifiable handcuffing, whether an arrest is made or not. These reports are first reviewed by the officer’s supervisor, then the Deputy Chief of Police, then the Training Supervisor. At each level the reviewers check the report to ensure that all of the necessary details are documented and that the use of force was in compliance with NPD policy. Those forms are scanned and saved in the department’s internal data server.
Upon review of the data from 2017, we noted that we used force on 45 subjects. It’s also notable that the great majority of injuries reported involve minor cuts and abrasions. We also observe that most of the force used was physical force such as takedowns, wrist locks, and “come along” techniques. These are hands-on tactics that do not involve any sort of equipment. It should also be noted that in 15 of these 45 events, officers “displayed” their firearm or taser in conjunction with verbal de-escalation strategies in order to gain compliance of the subject. Neither taser nor firearm was discharged in these 15 events.
In the data set that we have released we do not include dates and addresses in order to protect the privacy of the people involved. Also, we use IMC as our internal software system. This is where all of our reports and dispatch information are documented. The system has set parameters that we must work within. The race and ethnicity categories are limited to those that are presented in this table. We recognize that there are more ethnicities than Hispanic or Non-Hispanic, but our system does not allow us to record more extensive ethnicities at this time.