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AP's 'Lethal Restraint' Documents Deaths from Police Use of Force

The Associated Press' expansive project called Lethal Restraint, an investigation into police use of force that encompasses hundreds of investigative stories and visuals. The investigation, conducted by a team of journalists led by The Associated Press, documents 1,036 deaths over the decade from 2012–2021 after police used physical force or weapons that are meant to be safer than firearms – the kinds of force that is not supposed to be fatal.

Readers can browse to view details from all the cases or search for cities and towns where deaths happened. In addition to the stories and images, the team created a new database that tracks the cases and provides opportunities to understand patterns in policing. As the AP notes, the U.S. government is supposed to track these non-shooting deaths, but poor implementation and inconsistent reporting from local law enforcement agencies mean no one really knows the scope. A team of journalists led by The AP spent three years reporting on deaths after “less-lethal force,” in collaboration with the Howard Centers for Investigative Journalism and FRONTLINE (PBS). A documentary, “Documenting Police Use Of Force,” will premiere April 30 on PBS.



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A daily report co-sponsored by Arizona State University, Criminal Justice Journalists, and the National Criminal Justice Association

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