This update to our 2017 report on patterns of excessive force by police in Kern County documents Bakersfield Police Department’s ("BPD") continued use of unconstitutional practices, including excessive force and use of canines to attack and seriously injure members of the public. Updated data in the report confirms that BPD remains one of the deadliest police departments in California and the country and continues to use criminal charges, such as “resisting arrest," to preempt and defend against allegations of excessive force or racial profiling.

Deficient oversight and accountability structures have allowed law enforcement misconduct to go unchecked and in some cases escalate. Changes to BPD policies, training, and institutional structures are therefore required to ensure that officers carry out their duties lawfully, ethically, and safely — consistent with the Constitution and respect for the sanctity of life.


If you've experienced excessive force or other violations of your rights by Bakersfield Police Department officers or Kern County Sheriff's Office deputies, please let us know.