Police in the United States are generally permitted to use lethal force when the situation requires it. In other words, they may need to use lethal force to protect their own lives or the lives of others. In other circumstances, police need to use other less violent means to enforce the law.
The problem is, the line of when lethal force is necessary and/or required can be a fuzzy one. Numerous lives have been lost because of the lack of clarity on this issue, and numerous police have walked free of any consequences for their actions as a result. The bottom line is that a lot of people die in the United States every year as a result of police-caused killings and the problem doesn’t seem to be getting better.
How many people did police kill in 2017?
According to the most recent statistics available, 1,129 people died at the hands of police in 2017. Even more disturbing is the fact that a full 25 percent of the people killed by police were black, in spite of the fact that black individuals only account for 13 percent of the U.S. population
The fact that simply having darker colored skin increases likelihood of someone dying at the hands of a police officer is terrifying. According to other statistics, black people are three times more likely to be killed by a police officer compared to white people.
These statistics can be found in a recently published report called “Mapping Police Violence.” Mapping Police Violence says that its figures are the result of “Compiling information from media reports, obituaries, public records, and databases like Fatal Encounters and the Washington Post.” It also says, “This report represents the most comprehensive accounting of deadly police violence in 2017.”
Were you or a loved one unnecessarily injured by police in Chicago?
If you or a loved one were hurt — or killed — by law enforcement officers in the Chicago area, you may want to investigate your legal rights and options. If the police acted out of the bounds of the situation, and used excessive force that resulted in injury or death, you are probably on the right side of the law and you may want to assert your legal rights in court.