Factors Influencing Fatal Officer-Involved Shootings
David Gerstenberger, Keanan Beatty, Georgie Ann Weatherby

Fatal officer involved shootings are an interesting phenomenon lacking proper study. This study aims to examine factors including population density, racial diversity, climate (temperature), and crime rates in eight different cities and how those factors affected fatal officer-involved shootings in each respective city. Data were collected for the year 2010 for cities Durham, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Omaha, Seattle, and Spokane. It was originally hypothesized that increased crime rates, higher population density, higher racial diversity, and warmer climates would lead to an increase in fatal officer-involved shootings in a city. After an extensive meta-analysis of data and statistical computations, it could only be confirmed that there was a correlation between warmer annual mean temperatures in cities and an increase in fatal officer-involved shootings taking place there. Though there were small trends correlating the relation between each city’s crime rate, racial diversity, and population density with respect to the incidence of fatal officer-involved shootings there, the data were largely inconclusive. This study was not without its limitations, so it seems that future researchers might choose to focus on one factor and how it influences fatal officer-involved shootings for more complete and conclusive analysis.

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