Ambushes of Police: Environment, Incident Dynamics, and the Aftermath of Surprise Attacks Against Law Enforcement

Ambush attacks against law enforcement officers remain a threat to officer safety, with the number of attacks per year holding steady since a decline in the early 1990s and the proportion of fatal attacks on officers attributable to ambushes increasing. Concerns about targeted violence against police are on the rise, while officers must not only be guardians of the public but also be prepared to respond to violence targeting them. This report includes a literature review of extant research on the topic of ambushes against police specifically and violence against police more generally. This area of research remains understudied. Only a few national studies have been completed, and there have been only a handful of studies focused specifically on ambushes. This study includes the first comprehensive set of analyses conducted on the topic of ambushes in more than two decades.

Author: George Fachner, Zoe Thorkildsen

Federal Sponsor Agency: COPS

Provider: CNA

Publication Date: 2015

Publication Type: PDF

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