We study the link between officer injuries-on-duty and the force-use of their peers using a network of officers who, through a random lottery, began the police academy together. We find that peer injuries-on-duty increase the probability of using force by 7%. The effect is concentrated in a narrow time window near the event and is not associated with significantly lower injury risk to the officer. Complaints of improper searches and failure to provide service also increase after peer injuries, suggesting that the increase in force might be driven by heightened risk aversion.
determinants & factors affecting police use of force, effect of traumatic events & emotions on decision-making, risk aversion, peer networks, empirical analysis, law and economics, law enforcement, policing
Holz, Justin E.; Rivera, Roman G.; and Ba, Bocar A., "Spillover Effects in Police Use of Force" (2019). Faculty Scholarship at Penn Law. 2133.
Behavioral Economics Commons, Criminology and Criminal Justice Commons, Law and Economics Commons, Law Enforcement and Corrections Commons, Policy Design, Analysis, and Evaluation Commons, Public Affairs Commons, Public Economics Commons