Over 100,000 law enforcement officers attacked in two years, FBI report shows

A new report from the FBI shows an alarming surge in attacks against police officers over the past two years.

Over 100,000 law enforcement officers attacked in two years, FBI report shows
Chris Yarzab/Creative Commons
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More than 100,000 law enforcement officers have been attacked while on duty in the past two years, according to FBI statistics. The bureau's special report, released on Tuesday, also revealed the number of officers feloniously killed between 2021 and 2023 was higher than in any other consecutive three-year period in the last 20 years, with a staggering 194 officers losing their lives.

The report further highlighted that in 2023 alone, law enforcement agencies across the nation reported a total of 79,091 officer assaults, marking the highest assault rate in the past decade. The most common circumstances under which these assaults occurred were when officers responded to simple assaults against non-officers and drug violations.

Recent data shows that in 2024, 12 law enforcement officers have been feloniously killed, and 21 have died in accidents while on duty. The release of the special report coincides with National Police Week, during which police groups aim to raise awareness about the increasing violence faced by officers in the line of duty.

Retired Lt. Randy Sutton, founder of Wounded Blue, attributes this alarming trend to the "dehumanization of law enforcement" in recent years.

He told the National Desk's Jan Jeffcoat, "The defunding of law enforcement and the demonizing of law enforcement by political elites, by the media, by 'activists' who have pushed a policy of not supporting law enforcement in meaningful ways... means that law enforcement officers are afraid to defend themselves."

Sutton's organization, based in Las Vegas, focuses on supporting injured officers and their families by advocating for worker's compensation, providing health support, and pushing for stronger legislation.

He emphasized the severity of the situation, stating, "That number of 79,000 law enforcement officers being physically assaulted in 2023 is a sharp, sharp increase from previous years. Many of these attacks wind up in disabling injuries or serious injuries, which can have dramatic effects on the life [and] on the mental and physical well-being of these law enforcement officers."

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