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Officers Feloniously Killed

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This page provides information about duly sworn city, university and college, county, state, tribal, and federal law enforcement officers who were feloniously killed in the line of duty during 2010 and who met certain other criteria (e.g., they had full arrest powers; they ordinarily wore a badge and carried a firearm).

Overview

  •  In 2010, 56 law enforcement officers were feloniously killed in the line of duty. 
  • Of the officers feloniously killed, 32 were employed by city police departments, including 13 who were members of law enforcement agencies in cities with 250,000 or more inhabitants. 
  • Line-of-duty deaths occurred in 22 states and Puerto Rico. 
  • By region, 22 officers were feloniously killed in the South, 18 officers in the West, 10 officers in the Midwest, 3 in the Northeast, and 3 officers were feloniously killed in the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico. 

More information about these topics (including annual totals from 2001 to 2010) is provided in Tables 1, 2, 15, 16, 21, 22, 28, 29, and 30.

Victim profile

  • The average age of the officers who were feloniously killed in 2010 was 38 years. 
  • The slain officers’ average length of law enforcement service was 10 years. 
  • Of the 56 officers slain in 2010, 54 were male, and 2 were female. 
  • By race, 48 of the victim officers were white, 7 were black, and 1 was Asian/Pacific Islander. 

More information about these topics is provided in Tables 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, and 11.

Circumstances

  • 15 officers were killed in ambush situations. 
  • 14 officers died as a result of felonious attacks during arrest situations. 
  • 8 officers were slain while investigating suspicious persons/circumstances. 
  • 7 officers were killed during traffic pursuits/stops. 
  • 6 officers were murdered answering disturbance calls. 
  • 3 officers were slain during tactical situations (barricaded offender, hostage taking, high-risk entry, etc.). 
  • 2 officers were killed while conducting investigative activity (surveillance, search, interview, etc.). 
  • 1 officer was killed while transporting or maintaining custody of a prisoner. 

More information about this topic (including a breakdown of the types of circumstances in which officers were feloniously killed) is provided in Tables 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 2526, 31, 32, 33, and 34.

Assignments

  • 42 officers who were slain in 2010 were on assigned vehicle patrol. 
  • 8 officers were assigned to other duties, such as special assignments or undercover, when they were murdered. 
  • 5 of the slain officers were off duty but acting in an official capacity. 
  • 32 on-duty officers slain in 2010 were assisted at the time of the attacks. 
  • 19 on-duty officers were alone and unassisted at the time of the incidents.

More information about this topic is provided in Tables 15, 16, 17, 18, 23, 24, 25, and 26

Weapons 

  • Of officers killed in 2010, most (55) were killed with firearms. Of these, 38 were killed with handguns. (A breakdown of the types of weapons used in these slayings is provided in Table 27.) 
  • 7 officers were killed with their own weapons. 
  • 7 officers attempted to use their weapons; 16 officers fired their weapons. 
  • 21 officers were slain with firearms when they were 0-5 feet from the offenders. 

More information about this topic is provided in Tables 12, 13, 14, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 39, and 41.

Body armor

  • In 2010, 38 of the officers feloniously killed were wearing body armor at the time of their murders.
  • Of the 38 officers who were wearing body armor and killed with firearms: 
  • 10 were shot in the side of the head. 
  • 7 suffered wounds to the front of the head. 
  • 7 were wounded in the front upper torso. 
  • 5 were shot in the neck. 
  • 3 were shot in the stomach. 
  • 3 were shot in the rear of the head. 
  • 2 officers were shot in the back. 
  • 1 officer was shot in the rear below the waist. 

More information about this topic (including annual totals from 2001 to 2010) is provided in Tables 37, 38, 39, 40, and 41.

Regional and outlying area breakdowns

Of the 56 officers who died in 2010 as a result of felonious attacks:

  • 22 officers were employed in the South. 
  • 18 officers were employed in the West. 
  • 10 officers were employed in the Midwest. 
  • 3 officers were employed in the Northeast. 
  • 3 officers were employed in Puerto Rico. 

More information about this topic (including annual totals from 2001 to 2010) is provided in Tables 1, 21, 22, 29, and 30.

Months, days, and times of incidents

  • More officers (8) died from felonious assaults that occurred in December than in any other month in 2010. 
  • More officers (12) were involved in fatal assaults that occurred on Wednesday than on any other day of the week. 
  • More officers (19) were fatally injured in assaults that happened between 8:01 p.m. and midnight than at any other time period. 

More information about these topics (including annual totals from 2001 to 2010) is provided in Tables 3, 4, 5, 17, and 18.

Profile of alleged known assailants

In 2010, 69 alleged offenders were identified in connection with the 56 law enforcement officers feloniously killed. Of those offenders, the following characteristics are known:

  • The average age of the alleged offenders was 31 years old. 
  • The average height was 5 feet 10 inches tall, and the average weight was 178 pounds. 
  • 67 of the alleged offenders were male; 2 were female. 
  • 25 of the alleged offenders were white, and 35 were black. 
  • Most (57) of the alleged offenders had prior criminal arrests. 
  • 19 of the alleged offenders were under judicial supervision at the time of the incidents. 
  • 10 of the alleged offenders were under the influence of a controlled substance at the time of the fatal incidents. 
  • 7 of the alleged offenders were under the influence of alcohol or were intoxicated at the time of the fatal incidents. 

More information about these topics is provided in Tables 42, 43, 44, 45, and 46.