Division of Criminal Justice Services

Use of Force Reporting

State law requires every police department and county sheriff’s office to report any occurrence in which a police officer or peace officer employs the use of force under the following circumstances:

  • When an officer engages in conduct which results in the death or serious bodily injury of another personSerious bodily injury is defined as bodily injury that involves a substantial risk of death, unconsciousness, protracted and obvious disfigurement, or protracted loss or impairment of the function of a bodily member, organ, or mental faculty.
  • In the absence of either death or serious bodily injury, when one of the following is initiated by an officer:
    • brandishes, uses or discharges a firearm at or in the direction of another person;
    • uses a chokehold or similar restraint that applies pressure to the throat or windpipe of a person in a manner that may hinder breathing or reduce intake of air;
    • displays, uses or deploys a chemical agent, including, but not limited to, oleoresin capsicum, pepper spray or tear gas;
    • brandishes, uses or deploys an impact weapon, including, but not limited to, a baton or billy; or
    • brandishes, uses or deploys an electronic control weapon, including, but not limited to, an electronic stun gun, flash bomb, or long range acoustic device.

Please Note: The Division of Criminal Justice Services (DCJS) is not authorized to provide legal advice; however, it may provide general information.  DCJS is responsible for collecting, maintaining and reporting use of force information.  The Division does not make any officer or officer employer discretion determinations regarding this data, such decisions are reserved for the officer or the officer’s employer.  Accordingly, you may wish to contact your county attorney, or other legal counsel, for any specific or legal questions that you may have.

Staff from police departments and sheriffs’ offices that need access to the reporting tool used to comply with this requirement should contact DCJS at useofforce@dcjs.ny.gov for more information and/or questions about the reporting process.


Use of Force Data Collection Reporting Alert (issued July 2019): Additional information about the requirement mandated by state Executive Law 837-t.

Use of Force Regulations (effective July 11, 2019)

New York State Municipal Police Training Council Use of Force Model Policy (June 2019)