In the past few months, Dallas activists have been working to raise awareness about the number of black men police have killed over the years. The Huey P. Newton Gun Club has taken to the streets armed with rifles, and Dallas Communities Organizing for Change has analyzed data on police shootings over a 10-year period. The latter released a report on their findings: Black men, while making up a smaller percentage of the Dallas population than their white counterparts, die at the hands of police officers much more frequently.
Which you already knew. But now there's even more evidence, in the form of a ProPublica analysis of deadly police shootings from around the country that backs up the local group's findings.
ProPublica, a non-profit website with an investigative bent full of former New York Times and Wall Street Journal reporters, analyzed more than 1,200 deadly shootings between 2010 and 2012 from a federal database. It discovered that, nationally, black men, and in particular young black men, were 21 times more likely to be shot by police officers than their white counterparts.
According to ProPublica, black males aged 15 to 19 were killed at a rate of 31.17 per million, and white males in the same age range were killed at 1.47 per million.
Members of the local groups see a pattern when they see the numbers in their own report. "Upon analysis the data provides a clear picture of overwhelming bias in the application of deadly force against blacks and Hispanics," part of the report reads, "and makes a striking argument that Dallas Police use race as a determining factor in using force against an individual."
While making the point that blacks are far more likely to be shot by police, ProPublica notes that white men die at the hands of police as well. Based on data between 1980 and 2012, ProPublica reports that 44 percent of those killed by police were white.
So far, this year in Dallas has been somewhat of an anomaly. Three of the nine men -- Jason Harrison, Rodney Hodge and Steven Douglas -- killed by officers this year were black. It's worth noting that the three black Dallas men killed this year were all about 30 years old, and the six other white and Hispanic men were about that age as well.
ProPublica also notes that the Dallas Police Department is second in the nation with 14 killings with a shotgun, not a standard handgun, between 1980 and 2012. The Los Angeles PD leads with 47 of the 714 such incidents. Send your story tips to the author, Sky Chadde.
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