Table of Contents
Journal of Criminology
Volume 2014, Article ID 726492, 10 pages
Research Article

Latino Officers and Their Involvement in Police Shootings

1Riverside County Sheriff’s Department, Riverside, CA 92501, USA
2Department of Social Work and Social Ecology, Loma Linda University, San Bernardino, CA 92408, USA
3Department of Sociology, University of California, Riverside, CA 92521, USA

Received 24 September 2013; Accepted 23 December 2013; Published 25 February 2014

Academic Editor: Thierry H. Pham

Copyright © 2014 James P. McElvain and Augustine J. Kposowa. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


With an emphasis to examine Latino officers who have been involved in police shootings, this study analyzed twenty-one years (1990–2010) of data from one of the largest law enforcement departments in the United States. The study compared Latino population trends in the United States, the State of California, a southern California County, and focused on the representativeness of Latinos in one southern California law enforcement department. The analysis further investigated police shootings by the race of the officer, narrowing the focus to determine whether an increasing representativeness of Latino officers had any effect on police shootings. Results revealed that while the percentage of White officers in the department decreased and Latino officers increased, so too did their involvement in police shootings. Most surprisingly, Latino officer-involved shootings outpaced their growth in the department by a factor of 3.3 and in the county by a factor of more than 4.