A Shot in the Dark

October 7, 2014 - Wyatt Cenac 10/07/2014 Views: 101,882

Samantha Bee attempts to uncover statistics about the excessive use of lethal force by the police, only to discover that this data is mysteriously nonexistent. (7:09)

[ APPLAUSE ]>> WELCOME BACK.

RECENTLY MANY AMERICAN POLICE DEPARTMENTS HAVE FACED

CRITICISM FOR EXCESSIVE USE OF FORCE.

HERE WITH MORE IS SENIOR MY WIFECORRESPONDENT, SAMANTHA B.

>> THANK YOU. [ APPLAUSE ]

THANK YOU, THANK YOU SO MUCH,JASON.

IT IS A NATIONAL EMBARRASSMENT.

A DISGUSTED PUBLIC HAS POURED INTO THE STREETS DEMANDING

CHANGE FROM THE HIDEOUS STATUS QUO.

AND YET STILL, THESETESTOSTERONE FUELED OAFS WHO

HAVE PROVEN THEMSELVES UNFIT FORTHEIR JOBS ARE KEPT ON AND

EVEN PROMOTEED TO POSITIONS WHERE THEY CAN DO EVEN MORE

HARM.

>> WE'RE, WE'RE STILL TALKINGABOUT POLICE HERE, RIGHT?

>> POLICE? OH MY GOD, NO. NO,I'M TALKING ABOUT YOU,

YOU (BLEEP) ASSHOLE. SITTING INTHIS SEAT. THIS.

>> WE AGREED ON THIS. WE AGREED-- I WOULD DO ACT ONE, YOU WOULD

DO ACT TWO. WE, YOU KNOW, WOULDMAYBE FLIP FOR THE INTERVIEW.

>> YEAH, I SHOULD BE IN THATCHAIR RIGHT NOW.

>> OKAY. WAIT, WAIT. HOLD ON.[APPLAUSE]

THAT'S FINE, BUT CAN WE JUSTSHOW A LITTLE PICTURE OF HOW

SAM LOOKED WHEN, YOU KNOW, WEHEARD THAT ONE OF US WOULD HAVE

TO HOST? YEAH, RIGHT THERE.

>> OKAY. YOU KNOW WHAT THAT WAS?>> WHAT?

>> THAT WAS JOY VOMIT. I WASGOING TO GRAB THE BRASS RING

TODAY. ANYWAY, WHATEVER,WHATEVER, WHATEVER

BECAUSE WHILE YOU'RE IN THAT CHAIR REMOLDING JON'S ASS

GROOVE, I WAS OUT DOING SOME REAL REPORTING ON POLICE

SHOOTINGS.

ROLL THE PIECE.

>> I'M SUPPOSED TO SAY THATLINE.

>> YEAH. (BLEEP) YOU.

ROLL THE PIECE.

>> THERE'S BEEN DISCUSSIONLATELY ABOUT THE USE OF LETHAL

FORCE BY OUR NATION'S LAWENFORCEMENT.

BUT TO ADDRESS THE PROBLEM, ONE THING ALL AMERICANS NEED TO DO

IS LOOK AT THE DATA.

>> ONE OF THE VITAL PIECES OF INFORMATION THAT THEY NEED TO

HAVE IS HOW OFTEN THE GOVERNMENT KILLS PEOPLE.

>> CRIMINOLOGIST AND AUTHOR, DAVID KLINGER.

FIRST OF ALL, ARE SHOOTINGSOF CIVILIANS BY THE POLICE,

INCREASING OR DECREASING?

>> IT'S TOO HARD TO KNOW.

>> OKAY, IT'S NOT THAT HARD.INCREASING MEANS IT'S GOING UP,

AND DECREASING MEANS GOING DOWN.

>> WE HAVE NO IDEA.

>> OKAY.

THAT'S PROBABLY A MISTAKE.

THERE'S GOT TO BE SOME KIND OF ADATABASE.

>> THE FEDERALBUREAU OF INVESTIGATION HAS A

COUNT THAT THEY PUTOUT EVERY YEAR.

IT'S SOMETHING CALLED THE UNIFORM CRIME REPORT, BUT IT'S

SO FAR OFF, THAT IT REALLY ISN'TUSABLE.

>> HOW OFF WOULD YOU SAY THE NUMBERS ARE?

>> SOMEWHERE BETWEEN

WILDLY INACCURATE TOASTRONOMICALLY INACCURATE.

>> THAT CAN'T BE RIGHT. POLICEKEEPS STATS ON EVERYTHING.

WAIT, SO BACK IT UP FOR AMINUTE.

HOW MANY BICYCLES ARE STOLEN EVERY YEAR IN THIS COUNTRY?

>> TWO HUNDRED AND TWENTY SOMETHOUSAND.

>> HOW MANY HOME BURGLARIES ARETHERE?

>> 800,000 OR SO.

>> DO POLICE KEEP RECORDS OF HOWMANY BULLETS ARE DISCHARGED ON A

MONTHLY BASIS?

>> ALL MAJOR POLICE DEPARTMENTSTO TRACK THAT, YES MA'AM.

>> OKAY, DO THE POLICE KEEPA RECORD OF HOW MANY BULLETS ARE

DISCHARGED IN THE DIRECTION OF CIVILIANS?

>> YES.

>> HOW MANY PEOPLE ARE SHOT BY COPS ANNUALLY?

>> NO IDEA.

>> OKAY, NOW YOU'RE JUST (BLEEP)WITH ME.

OK, YOU KNOW WHAT, IF YOU WANTSTATS ON POLICE SHOOTINGS, THEN

YOU'VE GOT TO ASK A COP.

AND WHO BETTER THAN FORMER NYPDCOMMISSIONER BERNIE KERIK.

>> IF YOU LOOKED AT THE OVERALLDATA, I WOULD SAY THAT

POLICE SHOOTINGS HAVE, THEY'VEPROBABLY DECREASED.

>> WHERE CAN I FIND THATDATABASE?

>> WELL IF YOU GO IN THENEW YORK CITY POLICE DEPARTMENT.

THEY WOULD HAVE THOSE NUMBERS.

>> BUT WHAT ABOUT NATIONALLY?

>> POLICE DEPARTMENTS ARE MANDATED BY LAW TO PRODUCE

THIS MATERIAL TO THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE.

>> HE WAS RIGHT.

THE DOJ WAS ORDERED TO KEEP ARECORD OF POLICE SHOOTINGS BACK

IN 1994 THANKS TO A LAW PASSEDBY OUR METICULOUS CONGRESS.

>> BUT IT WAS NOT CAREFULLY CRAFTED.

THERE'S NO STATUTORY AUTHORITY THAT REQUIRES ANY LOCAL POLICE

AGENCY OR ANY STATE POLICE AGENCY TO REPORT ANYTHING.

>> SO BASICALLY IT'SSOMETHING LIKE THIS.

HEY GUYS, IT'S SHELLY FROM THEUNIFORM CRIME REPORT.

I WAS JUST WONDERING IF YOU COULD SEND ME THE STATS AND LIKE

HOW MANY PEOPLE WERESHOT DEAD OR WHATEVER.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO. IF YOU'VE GOTTIME.

OKAY? CATCH YOU LATER.

>> THAT'S NOT A TERRIBLEAPPROXIMATION.

>> THANK YOU.

HERE'S THE THING, NOBODY ISREQUIREED TO COMPLY

WITH THE LAW THAT YOU'RESPEAKING OF.

>> WELL, YOU KNOW, I'M CONFIDENT IT GOES SOMEWHERE IN

THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.

>> WELL THAT DATA GOESSOMEWHERE.

IT GOES LIKE THIS.POOF!

AND THEN IT JUST DISPERSES INTO THE WIND.

IT'S ONE SIMPLE STATISTIC.

THERE'S GOT TO BE SOME SORT OF FAMOUS STATISTICIAN.

OH, MY GOD. OH MY GOD. NATESILVER.

THANK GOD.

OKAY, YOU'RE A STATISTICS DORK.

HOW MANY PEOPLE WERE SHOT ANDKILLED LAST YEAR BY THE POLICE?

>> I DON'T, THOSE STATISTICSJUST DON'T EXIST.

>> AND YOU CALL YOURSELF A DORK?

>> I WOULDN'T USE THAT TERM.

>> OKAY, WELL, I WOULD.

DORK.

MAYBE IT WAS TIME I GOT THE FBI TO ANSWER SOME QUESTIONS.

AND I KNEW JUST HOW TO GET THEIR ATTENTION.

OH, THEY'RE ALREADY HERE.

BUYS, I HAVE A QUESTION FOR YOU.

OH, MY GOD.

AHHH. I JUST WANTTO KNOW HOW MANY

POLICE SHOOTINGS THERE ARE --OW, OW, YOU STEPPED ON MY BOOB!

>> IT WAS TIME TO TURN MY MOST TRUSTED ADVISER.

>> YOU WILL MEET A SMALL, MALEDORK.

>> UGH, I'VE ALREADY TALKED TONATE SILVER. GOD!

I LOOKED EVERYWHERE.

THE NATIONAL SHERIFFS' ASSOCIATION.

THE GAO.

THE CDC.WIKIPEDIA.

IMDB, GRINDR.

BUT JUST WHEN I WAS ABOUT TOGIVE UP, I DISCOVERED A

REPORTER WHOSE WEBSITEWAS CROWDSOURCING A NATIONAL

DATABASE OF POLICE SHOOTINGS.FINALLY!

>> WE DON'T REALLY KNOW THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE KILLED BY

POLICE.

>> OH MY GOD, WHY AM I EVENHERE?

HOW IS IT POSSIBLE THAT THREEDIFFERENT HANKS FROM

BREAKING BAD DIDN'T HAVE THENATIONAL STATISTICS?

AND THIS GUY HAD ONLY COUNTED UP TO NEVADA.

>> 8.7% OF TOTAL HOMICIDES IN NEVADA ARE COMMITTED BY

POLICE.

>> SO WHAT DOES THE NEVADA POLICE SAY WHEN YOU TOLD THEM

THIS?

>> NOTHING.

>> WHAT POSSIBLE REASONS COULD THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT HAVE TO

HIDE THE NUMBER OF TIMETHEY'VE KILLED CITIZENS?

I JUST ANSWERED THAT QUESTION IN MY HEAD AS IT WAS COMING OUT

OF MY MOUTH.

NEVER MIND.

YOU KNOW, NO MOM WANTS TO THINKTHEIR CHILD WILL GROW UP TO

BECOME JUST ANOTHER STATISTIC.

THANKFULLY GIVEN THE CURRENTSTATE OF OUR LAWS THERE'S

NO CHANCE OF THATEVER HAPPENING.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH SAMANTHA.THANK YOU SO MUCH.

YES, EXCELLENT REPORT. YOU DID AGREAT JOB.

[ APPLAUSE ]YES, YOU ARE A WONDERFUL WOMAN.

>> IT WAS AN EXCELLENT REPORT,BUT YOU'RE REALLY STARTING TO

LOSE IT.>> THANK YOU. YEAH, YEAH.

I'M NOT LOSING ANYTHING. I'MCHAINED TO THE (BLEEP) DESK.

>> OKAY.>> I'M HERE TO THE BITTER END.

WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.