Colleen Slevin / AP
The death rate at work for the police is higher this year than it was at this time in 2020, according to the organization that monitors deaths by law.
Reports to the National Memorial Fund of Law Enforcement Officials that as of Monday, June 21, a total of 151 deaths had been recorded – a jump of 11% compared to last year. NLEOMF monitors the deaths of federal, state, military, tribal and local law enforcement officials.
This compares with January 1 to June 21, 2020, when the organization recorded 136 police officers who died in the line of duty.
At Monday, 19-year-old Arvada police veteran Gordon Beesley marked another loss for the community of law. Beesley was killed along with two other people during a shooting in a downtown shopping district of the city of Arvada, Colorado, authorities said. NLEOMF numbers do not yet include his death.
He is the fourth Colorado police officer to die at work this year.
Beesley’s death comes just three months after another gunman killed 10 people, including another police officer, about 20 miles away from a supermarket in Boulder.
Log worker Eric Talley died on March 22nd while responding to a mass shooting at the King Soopers grocery store. At least three other Colorado police officers were killed this year while responding to incidents, he said Denver Post.
The other two killed Monday in Arvada include a shooting suspect and a third person described as a “Samaritan,” Arvada Deputy Police Chief Ed Brady told a news conference. Details of the suspect, the third victim and the incident that led to the shooting were not released on Monday.
COVID-19-related 2020 deaths
From 2010-2019, the leading cause of death for police officers on duty was a fatal shooting, according to NLEOMF. 528 male and female police officers were reportedly killed and killed.
The reason for the jump in mortality so far this year could be related to COVID-19.
Coronavirus infections were reported to have been the leading cause of death for police officers last year. In 2020, a total of 295 police officers died, with at least 182 dies of COVID-19, according to NLEOMF.
This recorded a 300% increase in unrelated causes of death to firearms or car accidents, otherwise categorized as “other causes,” the organization said.
NLEOMF stands for “other causes,” which explain illnesses or medical emergencies such as heart attacks or strokes at work, resulting in the deaths of 88 police officers so far this year. This time in 2020, 85 police officers died due to illness or other causes.
Others key to take away
Car accidents and other traffic incidents pose the greatest threat to police officers, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and NLEOMF.
From 2006-2019. During the year, 809 police officers died due to incidents related to motor vehicles – 43% of all deaths on the line.
The CDC says behavioral hazards put police officers at particular risk for traffic injuries or deaths at work. These include not wearing a seat belt, driving too fast (especially through intersections), interfering while on the device while driving, or experiencing vision in a tunnel from increased stress.
So far, 20 police officers killed in car accidents have been recorded in 2021, the NLEOMF said. By then in 2020, 25 police officers had been killed in accidents or other traffic-related incidents.
Why was 1930 the worst year?
2020 was the worst year in law deaths since 1930, according to statistics.
In 1930, 312 police officers were killed – still the deadliest year recorded.
The FBI links much of this to the rise of gangs since the U.S. enactment in the 1920s. according to agency.
“In the early 1930s, cities like St. Paul, Minnesota, became a virtual training ground for young scammers, while Hot Springs, Arkansas, became a safe haven and even a vacation spot for the criminal underworld,” the FBI said. “More often than not, local police forces have been desperate for a lack of modern tools and training.”