Law Enforcement Deaths Drop to 54-Year Low
Fewer police officers died last year in the United States than during any other time since the late 1950s, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.
A total of 111 law enforcement personnel died in the line of duty in 2013, marking the lowest number of fatalities since 110 were killed in 1959.
Last year’s total represented an 8% decrease from the 121 who died in 2012.
Auto-related incidents were the biggest killer of law enforcement. Thirty-one officers died in automobile crashes, 11 were hit by motorists and four were involved in fatal motorcycle crashes, for a total of 46 deaths.
The second leading cause of death was guns, which killed 33 officers. Of the firearms-related fatalities, seven were the result of ambush.
Some types of deaths went up last year, namely those not classified as gun- or auto-related. These totaled 32, compared with 24 in 2012.
Also, more officers died on the job from illnesses in 2013 than in 2012, 18 versus 8.
To Learn More:
Law Enforcement Fatalities Dip to Lowest Level in Six Decades (National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund) (pdf)
Police Deaths May be Fewest Since 1944 (by Noel Brinkerhoff, AllGov)
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