More than 2,000 people died during arrests in 2003-05, the first Justice Department figures on suspect deaths reveal, and more than half of them perished at the hands of law-enforcement officers. Officers reported 80% of suspects they killed had threatened or assaulted them with a weapon, the Times reports.
Overall, deaths occurred in fewer than one ten-thousandth of 1 percent of 40 million arrests. Drugs accounted for 13% of the deaths, followed by suicide, accidents, and natural injuries. The number of deaths rose 13% over the 3 years of the study, driven mostly by a 63% growth in suicides. Three hundred eighty officers died during arrests.