On October 19 the FBI released a report which shows that 48,315 police officers were assaulted in the line of duty in 2014, and “28.3 percent” of the assaulted officers sustained injuries.
According to the FBI, nearly one third of the assaults on officers took place during “disturbance calls.” Those who assaulted the officers “used personal weapons (hands, fists, feet, etc.) in 79.9 percent of the incidents.” Attackers used firearms four percent of the time and “knives or other cutting instruments in 2.0 percent of the incidents.”
Other “dangerous” but unnamed weapons were used against officers in 14.1 percent of the assaults.
The FBI report also showed that 45 officers died in the line of duty via accidents during 2014. Another 51 officers were killed in the line of duty “as a result of felonious acts.” Forty-six of the 51 officers killed were murdered with firearms in various situations.
For example, “11 were killed while answering disturbance calls, nine were conducting traffic pursuits/stops, seven were ambushed, seven were investigating suspicious persons or circumstances, five were conducting investigative activities (such as surveillances, searches, or interviews), four were killed in arrest situations, four were involved in tactical situations, and three were handling persons with mental illnesses, [and] one officer was killed in an unprovoked attack.”
The 51 was up from 27 killed as result of felonious actions in 2013 but down compared to the “five and ten-year comparisons.” In 2010 “56 officers” were killed “as a result of felonious acts” and in 2005 that figure was 55.
To date, 2015 has seen far fewer “non-accidental, firearm related” deaths for police officers than 2014. In early September The Guardian compared the number of police deaths through September 4 with previous years to that same date and suggested the U.S. is “on pace for 36 non-accidental, firearm-related police fatalities in 2015.”
Follow AWR Hawkins on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.