Diverse Police Forces Are Not a Panacea for Fatal Police Shootings

Jesse Bogan, St. Louis Post-Dispatch

Amid the firestorm of protests following the shooting of Michael Brown–an unarmed black teen who was killed by a white police officer–have come repeated calls for hiring a more diverse police force.

But a growing body of research suggests that intractable circumstances of economics, culture and geography have more to do with shootings by police than the race of the officers.

According to the research, neglected minority neighborhoods that are poor and prone to violence are a hotbed for such shootings–regardless of the complexion of the police.

And while the number of police shootings can be reduced by better training, disciplinary action, policy and political representation–the broader societal issues that plague violent neighborhoods work against efforts to reduce police shootings.

Former St. Louis Police Chief Dan Isom recently said at a town hall meeting here that cops are the “face of government” in poor neighborhoods that most people don’t venture into.

“Officers see (communities in need) every day and they become frustrated,” Isom said. “They seem to be the person on the front line trying to solve many of these social and economic problems.”

David Klinger, and other criminologists at the University of Missouri-St. Louis, including Isom, wrote an academic paper about 230 shooting incidents involving 315 St. Louis police officers between 2003 and 2012. Of those, about two-thirds of the shooters were white and one-third were African-American. According to the paper, the distribution was reflective of the police department during that period.

Of the known suspects police were shooting at in those cases, 92 percent of them were African-American. St. Louis is 49 percent black. But they have a disproportionate rate of interaction with police. Crime is concentrated in poorer black neighborhoods.

According to St. Louis police data for 2012 and 2013, 94 homicide suspects were African-American; two were white; one was Hispanic; and one was Asian. Of 4,713 inmates sentenced in St. Louis who are in state prison, 598 are white and 4,083 are black.

“Race is not a predominant factor driving (police) shootings,” said Klinger, a former police officer. “It’s violence in the communities.”

{snip}

Experts say having a more diverse force pays off in many ways, including building trust between the community and police.

And those benefits, say experts like Isom, extend beyond the sole issue of lethal force. Isom also points out that the study on police shootings in St. Louis isn’t conclusive.

“(The report) also doesn’t take into account that these are police officer reports from the police officer’s standpoint,” said Isom, who was recently named director of the Missouri Department of Public Safety. “I am not saying the reports aren’t accurate, but I think there is more research to be done.”

{snip}

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  • Fatal shootings of blacks are not what anger blacks (these things happen every-single-day ad naseum).

    What angers blacks is when a White assailant is involved. Of course this triggers the civil rights mafia, FBI, Congress, media scrutiny, rioting, violence, looting . . .

    Everyone sees through it, but it plays over & over, again & again.

    Rinse, repeat.

    • I did a statistical analysis using open-source numbers the other day of just that. Black criminals murder other blacks at a rate approximately 28 times higher than police and security guards of all races combined kill blacks, who are almost always also criminals.

  • First off, two AR threads today that mention David Klinger? Get his book, Into the Kill Zone. One of the astounding conclusions he found is that young cops who want to “make a difference” and have a young youthfully arrogant do-gooder attitude are far more likely than the older veteran cops and the stereotypical bad-###es to be shot and/or killed in the line of duty. And that the reason for that, as Klinger himself said, is that the criminal class take the young do-gooder cops for chumps and easy marks.

    Here’s a part from the article that AR snipped:

    There are limited studies in the field, but results from a study he participated in found that when there’s a black mayor dependent upon minority votes, police shootings fall. “Remember that in most cities the police chief serves at the pleasure of the mayor and can be fired without much or any due process,” he said.

    It’s not that police shootings fall because they have a reason to fall, it’s that the cops know their job pretty much exists at the pleasure of Mayor Sambo. St. Louis City has had two black mayors, a Sambo-type undertow-sympathetic one (who is now Dorian Johnson’s lawyer) and a high yellow “oreo” type who in fact was the former SLPD Chief. The reason that the Sambo didn’t negatively affect law enforcement in St. Louis is that at the time, the SLPD was under state control, meaning the Governor appointed four of five people on the police board, which in turn controlled department policy and hired the chief.

    • Whitetrashgang

      Funny, me being the WTG have also taking advantage of young cops. And having worked up north with natives the worse thing you can do is try to help them, it will only get you beat up, robbed or worse.

  • Samuel_Morton

    Who needs data and statistics when you have Black mob mentality and the media on your side?

  • Experts say having a more diverse force pays off in many ways, including building trust between the community and police.
    __________________________
    The writer of this piece must be a comedian (of the Joan Rivers type).

    Trust is an INTANGIBLE. It can’t be measured. In higher ed, the Marxists preach emphasizing intangibles constantly for propaganda reasons.

    A more diverse force pays off? NO! Letting unqualified Negroes take police jobs through affirmative action has no payoff. It’s harmful.

    Learn to recognize Marxist BS like this as it’s constantly being spewed by the media and their “experts.”

  • Ike Eichenberg

    “But a growing body of research suggests that intractable circumstances of economics, culture and geography have more to do with shootings by police than the race of the officers.”

    So close and yet so far.
    If he had only observed sub Saharan genetics are responsible for the “economics” and “culture” and not added the fallacious “geography” he could have had a good article.

    • Jack Burton

      Typical liberal propaganda, they use correlations not causation.

    • JInSanD

      And don’t forget “neglected minority neighborhoods that are poor.”

    • Mergatroyd

      He cannot say that if he wants to keep his job, and he knows it.

  • antiquesunlight

    “According to St. Louis police data for 2012 and 2013, 94 homicide suspects were African-American; two were white; one was Hispanic; and one was Asian.”

    Sounds about standard. The last time I looked at the Atlanta Police Department monthly crime reports, blacks, over the several month period that I looked at, committed 100% of homicides and rapes in the city in which the race of the perpetrator was known. They are somewhere between 50 and 55% of the population here. It’s been a while since I looked at the reports, but I’m going to go out on a limb and guess they don’t look much different.

    • JInSanD

      Were the two whites “white hispanic”, “hispanic white” or just white?

  • TruthBeTold

    “Race is not a predominant factor driving (police) shootings,” said
    Klinger, a former police officer. “It’s violence in the communities.”

    And those violent communities are most often inhabited by one specific race.

  • Reverend Bacon

    “According to St. Louis police data for 2012 and 2013, 94 homicide suspects were African-American; two were white; one was Hispanic; and one was Asian.” In other words, 94 of 98 suspects, or about 96%, are black.

    “Of 4,713 inmates sentenced in St. Louis who are in state prison, 598 are white and 4,083 are black.” In other words, only about 87% of those convicted are black.

    It’s true that the second set of data must come from many years of homicides, and possibly other crimes, while the first set comes from just homicides for the past 2 years. But it’s also possible that blacks have a lower conviction rate, due to things like black jury nullification (“Bronx juries”- Flaherty) and other bias in a justice system always in search of Wolfe’s Great White Defendant.

    • And there’s another thing. Of the state prison inmates sentenced in St. Louis, either because they lived in St. Louis City or committed their crime in St. Louis City, 87% are black and 13% are white. Yet, the universe of criminal defendants in St. Louis city is 97-98% black depending on the year. What explains the disproportion that works against whites? The answer is that sentences handed out to black convicts in the St. Louis City circuit are notoriously light. For instance, a few years ago, we found out that one in five first time armed robbers didn’t get any prison time.

  • Bantu_Education

    The real reason why “black communities” want a black police farce (sic) is that they know blacks are naturally corrupt and cowardly and can be easily persuaded and/or intimidated into turning a blind eye to dem bruthas various criminal enterprises. In the best case scenario black police forces are just useless, but more likely will become a criminal gang themselves. Its the same with black “governments”. Follow the easy money.

    • Mergatroyd

      This is exactly why the Second Amendment was written.

  • superlloyd

    In other words, blacks are endemically violent and criminal and therefore will inevitably be involved in more violent confrontations with the police than other races, like that worthless thug St. Michael Brown.

    This is plainer than the nose on my face but to be welcomed, as coming from an academic and PC police chief, despite his caveat.

  • Mergatroyd

    A diverse workforce automatically means a huge lowering of standards.

    Criminal records will be overlooked, psychological evaluations will be ‘race sensitive,’ and the written tests will be a joke. None of them will wash out of the police academy.

    This is what will be given power over us to do as they please against us while protecting their fellow ethnics. No different from what goes on in the 3rd world right now, but then looking over the country, that is exactly where we are heading, and fast.

  • MekongDelta69

    “communities in needreally means ‘communities in need of… higher IQs, lower self-inflicted violence, less drugs, less brainwashing and indoctrination, no glamorizing of the gangsta thug life, more fathers, less dependence on the nanny-state, more taking responsibility for your own actions, less blaming of everyone else for your own self-inflicted problems, and… 100,000 more years of evolution.’

    • Don’t hold your breath for the entertainment industries to stop glamorizing the thug life. They make a lot of money doing just that.

  • Georgia Boy

    There’s that phrase again … “a growing body of research suggests.” Meaning, OK, here’s what I want to be true, and I’m going to dress it up in scientific language even though I know the evidence doesn’t really say that. In this case, a remake of the old “it’s not race, it’s poverty” fallacy. Nice false dichotomy too … “So which is the problem, undiverse police or poverty in the hood?”