The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) released statistics on law enforcement officers killed and assaulted in 2015. Of those killed in the line-of-duty, 41 of these died as a result of felonious acts, which is 10 less than those killed as a result of felonious acts in 2014. The deaths that occurred as a result of accidents remained the same in both 2014 and 2015 with 45 deaths. As far as assaults, 50,212 officers fell victim to on-duty assaults.
The felonious deaths occurred in 21 states and Puerto Rico. The officers killed were on average 40 years old with law enforcement service of 12 years. Of the 41 officers, 38 of these were male and three were female. Eight of these officers were killed while investigating a suspicious person or circumstances. Of these eight; seven were involved in tactical situations; six were conducting traffic pursuits/stops; five were killed in arrest situations; four were ambushed; three were killed while answering domestic disturbance calls; three were killed in unprovoked attacks; two were handling, transporting, or maintaining custody of prisoners; two were handling persons with mental illnesses; and one was conducting an investigative activity (such as surveillance, a search, or an interview).
Nearly all used firearms, with only three killed with vehicles used as a weapon. Of the 38 killed with a firearm, 29 were killed with handguns, seven with rifles, one with a shotgun, and one with an unknown type of firearm. Nineteen of these deaths occurred in the South, nine in the West, five in the Midwest, four in the Northeast, and four in Puerto Rico. A total of 37 alleged assailants were identified in connection with these deaths; 31 of these assailants had prior criminal arrests, and none of these offenders were under judicial supervision at the time of the felonious death.
Of the 45 officers killed accidentally while performing their duties in 2015, 29 were killed in automobile accidents. The average age of the officer accidentally killed was 37-years-old and the average amount of years serving as an officer was nine.
Of those who lost their life on-duty as a result of an accident, 41 were men and four were female. Of those who died as a result of automobile accidents, FBI officials learned that seven were struck by vehicles, four died in motorcycle accidents, two were accidentally shot, one died in an aircraft accident, one was killed in a fall and one died in another type of a duty-related accident. In the reports, seatbelt use was reported in 26 of the 29 incidents, showing that 18 were wearing seatbelts and eight were not wearing seatbelts at the time of the accidents. Regionally, twenty-nine of these accidental deaths occurred in the South, six in the Midwest, five in the Northeast, and five in the West.
In 2015, 50212 officers were assaulted while on duty, 28.4% of these being injured as a result of the assault. Most were assaulted while responding to disturbance calls. In 79 percent of these incidents hands, fists, feet, etc. were used in the assault. Firearms were used in 4% of these incidents, knives or other cutting instruments in 1.8% of the incidents and other types of dangerous weapons were used in 15.1% of the assaults.
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