Does military veteran status and deployment history impact officer involved shootings? A case-control study

Academic Article


  • BACKGROUND: Despite veterans' preference hiring policies by law enforcement agencies, no studies have examined the nature or effects of military service or deployments on health outcomes. This study will examine the effect of military veteran status and deployment history on law enforcement officer (LEO)-involved shootings. METHODS: Ten years of data were extracted from Dallas Police Department records. LEOs who were involved in a shooting in the past 10 years were frequency matched on sex to LEOs never involved in a shooting. Military discharge records were examined to quantify veteran status and deployment(s). Multivariable logistic regression was used to estimate the effect of veteran status and deployment history on officer-involved shooting involvement. RESULTS: Records were abstracted for 516 officers. In the adjusted models, veteran LEOs who were not deployed were significantly more likely to be involved in a shooting than non-veteran officers. Veterans with a deployment history were 2.9 times more likely to be in a shooting than non-veteran officers. CONCLUSIONS: Military veteran status, regardless of deployment history, is associated with increased odds of shootings among LEOs. Future studies should identify mechanisms that explain this relationship, and whether officers who experienced firsthand combat exposure experience greater odds of shooting involvement.
  • Authors

    Digital Object Identifier (doi)

    Author List

  • Reingle Gonzalez JM; Bishopp SA; Jetelina KK; Paddock E; Gabriel KP; Cannell MB
  • Start Page

  • e245
  • End Page

  • e252
  • Volume

  • 41
  • Issue

  • 3