Black Americans have significantly less confidence in their local police departments than white Americans, surveys show, and it could be having some startling effects on crime.
A new study analyzing nearly 900,000 911 calls in Milwaukee found that emergency calls from majority-black neighborhoods dropped precipitously after the highly publicized beating of a black man by police officers. In the months after the number of emergency calls fell, Milwaukee saw an uptick in homicides - highlighting a potential link between incidents of police violence and an increases in violent crime.
The findings come as the latest FBI crime data released last week show a 4 percent uptick in violent crime and an 11 percent increase in homicides in 2015.
Despite the increases, overall crime rates remain at near-record lows, but notable spikes in several cities have left police leaders and criminologists looking for a cause and have prompted scrutiny of recent police violence and subsequent protests.