Accession Number : ADA309425

Title :   Police Use of Nondeadly Force: Oleoresin Capsicum Spray.

Descriptive Note : Master's thesis,

Corporate Author : AIR FORCE INST OF TECH WRIGHT-PATTERSON AFB OH

Personal Author(s) : Morabito, Eugene V.

PDF Url : ADA309425

Report Date : 1996

Pagination or Media Count : 153

Abstract : Much of the current knowledge regarding police-civilian violent encounters relies upon the lethal force literature. Focusing upon police-caused deaths restricts inquiry to the extreme end of the continuum and rivets attention on the product rather than the process. As a result, the present study analyzes 'Use of Force' reports from one police agency to examine individual and situational characteristics in these incidents with a specific emphasis on police use of oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray. A chi square test of significance is used to determine the impact of individual officer and offender characteristics and situational factors on level of force and use of OC spray. Officers use lower levels of force against female offenders while using higher levels against armed or threatening suspects. Additional findings support the hypothesis that officers who are at a physical disadvantage compared to the size of the offender resort more readily to pepper gas. Officers also prefer OC to personal and impact weapons when faced with Level Three, passive physical resistance, and Level Four, active physical resistance, actions. As suspects hecome more violent, OC use declines. Finally, the use of pepper spray significantly curtails officer and offender injuries. The implications of these findings for police organizations are discussed.

Descriptors :   *TOXIC HAZARDS, *CHEMICAL AGENTS, *LETHALITY, *SPRAYS, *POLICE, *CRIMINAL INVESTIGATIONS, *CRIMINOLOGY, *NONLETHAL AGENTS, WEAPONS, ORGANIZATIONS, DECISION MAKING, IMPACT, PHYSICAL PROPERTIES, RESISTANCE, REPORTS, PASSIVE SYSTEMS, GASES, DOCUMENTS, RIVETS, LOW LEVEL, BEHAVIOR, HYPOTHESES, OFFICER PERSONNEL, DEATH, ATTENTION, LAW ENFORCEMENT, CHI SQUARE TEST, CRIMES, CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM, CONDIMENTS.

Subject Categories : Toxicology
      Chemical, Biological and Radiological Warfare

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE