SPOKANE, Wash. — The Spokane Police Department is responding to increasing questions about 'use of force' and higher numbers of arrests among black residents as compared to other groups.
Data from 2018 shows African-Americans are up to five times more likely to be arrested in the Spokane than white people.
According to the Spokane Police Department's "Use of Force Comprehensive Analysis," 10% of the department's total arrests were of black subjects. In 2017, 677 African Americans were arrested by the department, and this rose to 712 in 2018.
U.S. Census data estimates that Spokane's population is only 2% African-American.
The report also shows that of the 712 arrests of African Americans in 2018, officers resorted to "use of force" 15 times, or in 2 percent of the arrests.
In comparison, there were 79 instances of "use of force" in 5,292 arrests of white people, or 1.5 percent of the time.
A spokesman for SPD said Chief of Police Craig Meidl is concerned about the recent numbers, and tells KREM the department is tackling it with an in-depth analysis of the numbers and more targeted training.