U. S. Attorney General speaks Eric Holder speaks during a news conference before a roundtable meeting Thursday, Dec. 4, 2014, in Cleveland. The US Justice Department issued a report Thursday that says Cleveland police officers use excessive and unnecessary force far too often, are poorly trained in tactics and firearm use and place the public and their fellow officers in danger because of reckless behaviors. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
WASHINGTON—The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund today released preliminary fatality statistics for 2014. The data in the report shows that 126 federal, state, local, tribal and territorial officers were killed in the line of duty this year. The report further showed that in 2014, 50 officers were killed by firearms, 49 officers were killed in traffic-related incidents, and 27 officers died due to other causes including 24 who suffered from job-related illnesses—such as heart attacks—while performing their duties.
Attorney General Eric Holder made the following statement today:
“These troubling statistics underscore the very real dangers that America’s brave law enforcement officers face every time they put on their uniforms. Each loss is both tragic and unacceptable — a beloved father, mother, son, or daughter who never came home to their loved ones.
“That’s why, over the last six years, my colleagues and I have taken action to support these courageous men and women. As we speak, the Justice Department continues its efforts to empower local, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement personnel to do their jobs as safely and effectively as possible. In 2011, I created an Officer Safety Working Group in response to concerns about violence directed at law enforcement. The department is currently funding thorough analysis of 2014 officer fatalities, including ambushes of law enforcement and other incidents, so we can mitigate risks in the future. And through groundbreaking initiatives like VALOR, we are providing cutting-edge training to help prevent violence against law enforcement, to improve officer resilience, and to increase survivability during violent encounters.
“Through our Bulletproof Vest Partnership Program, we’re helping to provide lifesaving equipment to those who serve on the front lines. And through the Public Safety Officers’ Benefits Program, we’re offering our strongest support to our brave officers and their loved ones in the toughest of times.
“Going forward, this unshakeable commitment to those who serve will continue to guide our efforts to improve 21st-century policing and build trust between law enforcement and the communities they protect.
“I have always been proud to support these selfless public servants. All Americans owe our courageous law enforcement personnel a tremendous debt of gratitude for their patriotic service, for their often-unheralded sacrifices, and for the dangers they routinely face in the name of public safety.”