FBI Releases Update to Use-of-Force Data from 2022
March 28, 2023
The FBI has published updated data from the National Use-of-Force Data Collection for January 2022 through December 2022 on the Crime Data Explorer webpage. Updates to all previous years’ Use-of-Force data are also available.
This data is voluntarily submitted to the FBI by federal, state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies enrolled and/or participating in the National Use-of-Force Data Collection. Only agencies that submitted use-of-force incident reports or zero reports for January 2022 through December 2022 are included in this report.
In 2022, 9,712 out of 18,514 federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement agencies throughout the nation provided use-of-force data. This data includes zero reports, or reports submitted by an agency to indicate that agency didn’t have a use-of-force incident in a given month. The officers employed by the participating agencies represent 69% of federal, state, local, and tribal sworn officers in the nation.
Enrolled Agencies are agencies that have at least one registered use-of-force data account and are eligible to submit data to the FBI. Participating Agencies are enrolled agencies that have submitted data, including incident reports and/or zero reports, with a report date in 2022. “No Response” refers to agencies that are enrolled and participating but did not submit a report for the month.
Number of Agencies Participating
Percentages for Reason for Report and Reason for Initial Contact
Reason for Report
|The death of a person due to law enforcement use of force||32.6|
|The serious bodily injury of a person due to law enforcement use of force||52.5|
|The discharge of a firearm by law enforcement at or in the direction of a person that didn't otherwise result in death or serious bodily injury||15.5|
Reason for Initial Contact
|Medical mental health or welfare assistance||6.4|
|Routine patrol other than traffic stop||4|
|Follow up investigation||3|
|Response to unlawful or suspicious activity||56.1|
|Warrant services/court order||10.1|
Most Frequent Categories
Type of Force
|Rank||Type of Force Used|
|#3||Electronic Control Weapon|
|#1||Failing to comply to verbal commands or other types of passive resistance|
|#2||Attempted to escape or flee from custody|
|#3||Displaying a weapon at an officer or another|
|#4||Using a firearm against an officer or another|
|#5||Resisted being handcuffed or arrested|
The data elements “Type of Force Used” and “Resistance Encountered” are collected in a way that lets contributors select one or more fields for each incident report. These data elements are listed in order by how frequently each field is selected within the entire data set, regardless of the varying combinations that may happen within submitted incidences. This ordering is intended to depict the data and its meaning to the collection.
About the data
Law enforcement officers across the country often face complex and dangerous policing environments that may result in use-of-force incidents. Such incidents have long been a topic of national discussion. However, a number of high-profile cases involving law enforcement use of force have heightened awareness of these incidents. In order to promote more informed conversations regarding law enforcement use of force in the United States, representatives from major law enforcement organizations worked in collaboration with the FBI to develop the National Use-of-Force Data Collection. The collection officially began accepting data on January 1, 2019.
The data collection provides a mechanism for law enforcement agencies to report their officers’ use-of-force incidents for the purpose of compiling national statistics. The Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program recommends the FBI utilize a police employee (PE) count of 860,000 as the standard when determining law enforcement participation in the National Use-of-Force Data Collection. This PE count includes all known and reasonably presumed federal, local, state, tribal, and college and university law enforcement eligible to participate in this national collection. The goal of the resulting statistics is to provide an aggregate view of the incidents reported and the circumstances, subjects, and officers involved. The data collected focuses on readily known information that can be reported within the first few days following a use-of-force occurrence. Reports emphasize the collective nature of the data. As a federal program, the UCR Program doesn’t assess whether the officers involved in use-of-force incidents acted within the bounds of their respective departmental policies.
What data is collected?
Data is collected and reported for any use of force that results in:
- The death of a person due to law enforcement use of force;
- The serious bodily injury of a person due to law enforcement use of force; or
- The discharge of a firearm by law enforcement at or in the direction of a person not otherwise resulting in death or serious bodily injury.
Serious bodily injury is defined as bodily injury that involves a substantial risk of death, unconsciousness, protracted and obvious disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty. This definition is partially based on Title 18 United States Code (U.S.C), Section 2246 (4). Serious bodily injury would include all gunshot wounds (regardless of whether they are penetrating or grazing), apparent broken bones, possible internal injury, severe laceration, stitches, sutures, chipped teeth, loss of teeth, canine bites requiring medical attention, unconsciousness due to an applied carotid artery hold, and injuries severe enough to require medical intervention and/or hospitalization. The term “medical intervention” doesn’t include routine evaluation of the subject by an emergency medical technician or medical staff at a medical facility to determine if they’re fit for arrest or detention.
If agencies experience no qualifying use-of-force incidents within a month, they submit a zero report.
Agencies voluntarily participate in the National Use-of-Force Data Collection. They’re responsible for submitting use-of-force information to the FBI about their own officers’ involvement (or lack thereof) in use-of-force events that meet the data collection’s criteria. Agencies’ data must conform to the FBI’s submission standards, specifications, and required deadlines. FBI personnel are available to assist contributing agencies with quality-assurance practices and reporting procedures. Agencies report these data either to their state’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) program, a designated UCR program for a particular organization (such as with federal agencies), or directly to the FBI.
An enrolled agency is one that has completed the required steps to obtain an account to submit data to the National Use-of-Force Data Collection. An agency would be considered a National Use-of-Force Data Collection participant once it has provided either:
- An incident report that meets the data collection’s scope; or
- A report indicating that no use of force met the data-reporting criteria.
An agency’s enrollment or participation status changes when:
- An agency no longer wishes to participate or ceases to operate as a law enforcement agency;
- An agency is in a data-submission partnership with a managing agency; and/or
- An agency’s data was received for a year previous to their enrollment.
Regardless of an agency’s enrollment status, qualifying data will be included in this report. Likewise, the agency’s past participation will still be available in historical data.
The data found here represents use-of-force incidents that have been reported to the FBI. The data may not include all incidents that have occurred. Parameters have been established for data representation since the National Use-of-Force Data Collection is new, and the number of agencies contributing data likely will not represent the majority of the nation until participation grows. These parameters depend on the coverage rate for each state. This rate is defined as the total law enforcement officer population represented by the use-of-force data reported.
Aggregate data will be published for states that report:
- Data covering at least 80% of its total officer population.
- Non-response items that account for less than 30% of all items.
(Nonresponse items are items for which contributors either don’t answer a question or answer "unknown and unlikely to ever be known.")
Ratios and percentages, as well as the most frequently reported response categories (in list format without actual counts), may be published for states that contribute:
- Data representing at least 60%, but not more than 80%, of its officer population.
- Non-response items that account for less than 30% of all items.
For states that contribute data representing 40-60% of their total officer populations, only response percentages for key variables may be reported.
The National Use-of-Force Data Collection is only releasing national-level data reflecting the 60%threshold. Regional and state levels of analysis will not be available in order to protect the privacy of individuals involved in use-of-force incidents. Datasets at the regional and state levels contain smaller numbers of reported incidents and less variety within the data elements. These variables increase the risk of linking specific answers in the data to individuals involved in such incidents. The FBI UCR Program is working diligently to develop new and advanced ways to maximize data transparency while also fulfilling our responsibility to protect the privacy of all individuals.
The Rule of Ten
This is an accepted methodology that statistical agencies use to ensure that contributed data about a given incident isn’t so unique that the specific incident and those involved could be easily identified from published data. There are a variety of ways to protect this sensitive data and the privacy of those involved in an incident. Data elements with fewer than 10 observations may be combined with other data elements from the same question to limit identifiability (“Rule of Ten”). Likewise, rates, percentages, and weighted counts may replace literal numbers to further mask specific incidents. Because of the structure of the data-publication parameters, The Rule of Ten will only be used at the 60% and 80% threshold levels for public release. Participation data released at the 40%-and-below level will not be subject to Rule of Ten requirements.
Key variables include injuries sustained by the subject and the type of force used in the incident.
The FBI will not disseminate data for states that contribute data representing less than 40% of their total officer populations. Narrative information will be provided to describe each state’s efforts to take part in the data collection for all participating states, regardless of the level of data reported. Finally, no statements will be made representing data as a national estimate until the coverage rate of the officer population reaches a minimum of 80% for the nation.
Avoid comparisons of FBI data and data from other organizations
The FBI’s National Use-of-Force Data Collection is one of a number of programs that collect and report information about law enforcement use of force in the U.S. Each organization has its own purpose and may use different methods to collect and report information. Additionally, different organizations may focus on somewhat different aspects of this important topic. Therefore, the FBI’s use-of-force data shouldn't be compared to data from other entities.