RESEARCH PAPER SHOWS MILITARIZED SWAT TEAMS DON'T MAKE COPS -- OR THE PUBLIC -- ANY SAFER | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED

RESEARCH PAPER SHOWS MILITARIZED SWAT TEAMS DON'T MAKE COPS -- OR THE PUBLIC -- ANY SAFER

A study has been released confirming what many have suspected: militarization of law enforcement doesn't make communities safer, has zero effect on officer safety, and is rarely deployed as advertised when agencies make pitches for the acquisition of military gear.

The most frequent recipient of military tools and training are SWAT teams. Professor Jonathan Mummolo's research -- published by the National Academy of Sciences -- gained unprecedented access to SWAT deployment numbers, thanks to a public records request and a Maryland state law requiring documentation of every SWAT raid performed. (That law was allowed to expire by legislators who apparently felt it provided too much transparency and accountability.)

With these numbers, Mummolo was able to compare SWAT deployments to other stats, as well as see just how often SWAT teams were deployed to handle dangerous situations like robberies, shootings, hostage-taking, etc. What he discovered was, sadly, unsurprising. Police officials talk about the necessity of SWAT teams and military gear using references to barricaded suspects, terrorist attacks, active shooters…. pretty much anything but what they actually use them for.

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