An annual poll of public attitudes in Wisconsin toward law enforcement shows shifting views on use of deadly force and enforcing marijuana laws. It also covers new issues such as arming school teachers and law officers’ use of body cams.

On Monday, the Wisconsin Professional Police Association (WPPA) released findings of its sixth annual poll conducted by St. Norbert College Strategic Research Institute. It surveyed 400 Wisconsin residents between Feb. 26 and March 28.

Deadly Force

When asked, "When law enforcement officers use deadly force, how much of the time do you believe it is necessary and justified? 45 percent said "always" or "most of the time,” which is down from 54 percent last year.

Arming Teachers

Findings revealed that 57 percent oppose armed teachers in schools, and 39 percent are in favor. The data found that 94 percent of people are opposed to concealed carry without any training.

Body Cameras

In regard to body cameras, 94 percent are now in favor of law-enforcement using body cameras, up 10 percent from last year.


All but 15 percent of responders said marijuana should be made legal in some form.

WPPA Executive Director Jim Palmer said the numbers serve as a guide to advance the public dialogue about policing in Wisconsin.

“Being sensitive to the sentiments of people we serve is fundamentally important in the policies that we pursue. It is also good for our members throughout the state to have a better understanding of how people feel,“ Palmer said.

Read the full report from the WPPA by clicking HERE (PDF).

Last Update: May 22, 2018 1:11 pm CDT

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