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Facts and Figures on Injuries Caused by Law Enforcement

Summary of U.S.-level data, 2001-2021 Heading link

In the U.S. during a given year, an estimated 1 million civilians experience police threat of or use of force resulting in a conservative estimate of 75,000 non-fatal injuries requiring hospital treatment and 600-1000 deaths.  Both Black/African-Americans and Hispanics/Latinos are twice as likely to experience threat of or use of force during police initiated contact (Bureau of Justice Statistics). Based on CDC data, Black African-Americans are more than twice as likely to be killed and almost 5-times more likely to suffer an injury requiring medical care at a hospital compared to white non-Hispanics.

Summary of Chicago, Cook County & Illinois hospital data, 2016-22 Heading link

This report (download the PDF) summarizes civilian injuries treated in Illinois hospitals between January 2016 and December 2022. For every death, there are approximately 40-70 non-fatal injuries that require treatment in a hospital; 12.8% of the civilians suffered traumatic brain injuries, which have potential long-term severe outcomes. While civilian injuries caused by law enforcement impacts all citizens in the State, African Americans are consistently and disproportionately the victims of both fatal and non-fatal injuries caused by law enforcement. The injury incidence rates among African-Americans are 5-10 times higher compared to white non-Hispanics depending on the region of residence.

Learn more about the study

Upcoming reports Heading link

The Law Enforcement Epidemiology Project at the University of Illinois Chicago aims to provide up-to-date surveillance data on civilian injuries caused during contact with law enforcement in the U.S., Illinois and Cook County-Chicago.

Civilian Deaths in Illinois

Our latest report which summarizes civilian fatal injuries caused during contact with law enforcement in Illinois will be posted shortly. The report provides a comprehensive summary of data from multiple data sources.

Cost of Police Misconduct to Taxpayers

Our latest report which summarizes Cook County and City of Chicago lawsuits involving civil suits for wrongful death, excessive force, false arrest, illegal detention, illegal search and seizure, civil rights violations and property damage will be released shortly.  The report summarizes the cost to taxpayers from police misconduct.

Officers with Repeated Complaints & Violations

Our latest report which summarizes officers with repeated complaints and violations will be released shortly.  These data comes from Police Review Authorities and Internal Affairs documents that are made publicly available.

Surveillance System in U.S.: Comparing the Numbers

We have described a framework for a comprehensive surveillance system based on existing public health data sources that can be implemented immediately to augment police reports and data from the Bureau of Justice Statistics. A final report will be published shortly.