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Use of Force by Female Police Officers

NCJ Number
Journal of Criminal Justice Volume: 33 Issue: 2 Dated: March/April 2005 Pages: 145-151
Peter B. Hoffman; Edward R. Hickey
Date Published
March 2005
7 pages
This study compared the use of force by female and male police officers.
There are few studies comparing the use of force by male and female police officers. As such, the current study examined the police use of force reports for 1,863 use-of-force incidents and data on 31,778 arrests by male and female police officers in a large, suburban police department in Maryland over a 7-year period (1993 through 1999). Computations for male and female rate of force for each type of force used were made based on the number of use-of-force incidents per 100 arrests. A suspect-injury rate was computed in the same manner. Results indicated no statistically significant difference between male and female officers in the overall rate of force or in the rate of unarmed physical force. Female officers had a lower rate of any suspect injury and of weapon use when all types of weapons were considered together. However, there were no gender differences in the rate of suspect injury resulting in hospital treatment. Overall, the differences discovered between male and female officers in their use of force were small, even when statistically significant. Tables, notes, references