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Race, Ethnicity, and PolicingNew and Essential Readings$
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Stephen K. Rice and Michael D. White

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780814776155

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814776155.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM NYU Press SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.nyu.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of NYU Press Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in NYSO for personal use.date: 19 September 2021

Blind Justice

Blind Justice

Police Shootings in Memphis

Chapter:
(p.368) Chapter 15 Blind Justice
Source:
Race, Ethnicity, and Policing
Author(s):

James J. Fyfe

Publisher:
NYU Press
DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814776155.003.0015

This chapter addresses the use of force by police by identifying factors that explain the disproportionate number of black males who are victims of police shootings. Using a hazard-based typology of shootings and data from New York City and Memphis, it demonstrates that the difference in shooting rates between the two cities can be attributed to the greater frequency with which Memphis officers shot fleeing property crime suspects in nonlife-threatening encounters. Moreover, an examination of the types of shootings by suspect race indicates that this deadly force practice disproportionately involved black suspects, leading to the conclusion that Memphis police differentiated racially by shooting blacks in circumstances less threatening than those in which they shot whites.

Keywords:   use of force, black males, police shooting, New York City, Memphis, shooting rates, nonlife-threatening encounters, suspect race, trigger fingers

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