U.S. flag

An official website of the United States government, Department of Justice.

Contacts Between Police and the Public, 2005

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 2007
14 pages
Matthew R Durose; Erica L Smith; Patrick A Langan Ph.D.
Publication Series
This report presents data on the nature and characteristics of contacts between residents of the U.S. and the police over a 12-month period.
Findings are provided from a nationally representative survey of more than 60,000 residents age 16 or older. Detailed information is presented on face-to-face contacts with the police, including the reason for and outcome of the contact, resident opinion on police behavior during the contact, and whether police used or threatened to use force during the contact. The report provides demographic characteristics of residents involved in traffic stops and use-of-force incidents. The report also provides comparative analysis with prior survey findings. Highlights include the following: An estimated 19 percent of U.S. residents age 16 or older had a face-to-face contact with a police officer in 2005, a decrease from 21 percent of residents who had contact with police in 2002; overall, about 9 out of 10 persons who had contact with police in 2005 felt police acted properly; of the 43.5 million persons who had contact with police in 2005, an estimated 1.6 percent had force used or threatened against them during their most recent contact, a rate relatively unchanged from 2002 (1.5 percent).

Date Created: July 2, 2018