Deaths of on-duty police officers rise in US

Police officers react during a funeral service for fallen police officer Sgt. Terrence Carraway in Florence, S.C., Oct. 8, 2018. Carraway was killed in the line of duty Oct. 3, 2018. More police officers have died in the line of duty this year than in 2017, according to data compiled by the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. | Associated Press file Photo by Richard Shiro, St. George News

WASHINGTON (AP) — More police officers have died in the line of duty this year in the U.S. than in 2017, according to data released Thursday. The most common cause of death was gunfire, and vehicular accidents claimed nearly as many officers’ lives.

Funeral programs for Corporal Zach Moak await distribution at his funeral services in Brookhaven, Miss., Oct. 4, 2018. Moak and officer James White were killed Sept. 30, responding to a call. | Associated Press file photo by Rogelio V. Solis, St. George News

The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund said in a report that 144 federal, state and local officers have died so far in 2018. That figure represents roughly a 12 percent increase from the 129 who died in 2017.

The majority of the officers who died were either shot — 52 this year, up from 46 in 2017 — or fatally injured in car or motorcycle crashes, which accounted for 50 deaths. Other fatalities involved heart attacks, strokes, drownings and cancer and other illnesses among those who responded to the 9/11 World Trade Center attack.

Of the officers who were shot, eight were killed during investigative activity and six were killed while responding to calls of a domestic or public disturbance, according to the report. Two were fatally shot while serving warrants, two died while handling or transporting prisoners and two others were inadvertently shot by other officers.

Of the officers who died in traffic-related incidents, 32 were killed in crashes involving another vehicle and 14 were struck while outside their vehicle. An additional four were killed in motorcycle crashes.

A police officer pays respects at a funeral service for fallen police officer Sgt. Terrence Carraway in Florence, S.C., Oct. 8, 2018 | Associated Press file Photo by Richard Shiro, St. George News

Craig Floyd, the fund’s chief executive officer, called the increase in deaths disappointing after a decline in 2017.

“Sadly this reminds us that public safety is a dangerous job and can come at a very steep price,” Floyd said in a statement accompanying the report. “We must never take the service and sacrifice of law enforcement officers for granted, and we must remember the families of the fallen who are left behind.”

The states that experienced the highest number of officer fatalities were Texas, California, Florida and New York, with 11 fatalities each.

Written by ERIC TUCKER, Associated Press.

Email: news@stgnews.com

Twitter: @STGnews

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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3 Comments

  • commonsense December 28, 2018 at 9:44 pm

    Obama, the great divider, put a target on police officers and eulogized punks like Michael Brown and Trayvon Martin.

    • iceplant December 29, 2018 at 10:46 am

      Wrong, wrong, and wrong.

    • Comment December 29, 2018 at 1:28 pm

      wow, cs, we can finally agree on something!

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