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How are percentiles calculated and why?
How are percentiles calculated and why?
Chaclyn Hunt avatar
Written by Chaclyn Hunt
Updated over a week ago

The percentiles used by our site compare the rate at which officers receive complaints and awards as well as the rate they report using force, rather than comparing the total count of each. This means that an officer who receives 20 complaints in 20 years (1 per year) will have a lower percentile ranking than an officer who receives 10 complaints in five years (2 per year).

This system provides a more accurate way to compare officers who have served in the CPD for different lengths of time. An officer who is in the 99th percentile of CPD officers for awards has received awards at a higher rate than 99% of other officers.

Our percentile rankings only look at officers for whom we have at least one year of data. Our use of force data covers only 2004-2016, so an officer who retired in 2002 will not have analysis of force percentile ranking.

The 1% (Most Complaints / Highest Rate of Complaints)

Officers who receive complaints at a higher rate than 99% of their colleagues. We compare the number of complaints each officer receives per year, so a longtime officer with many complaints is less likely to appear on this list than a rookie officer with the same number of complaints.

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