Home LEOKA 2018 Topic Pages Officers Feloniously Killed

Officers Feloniously Killed

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The following information concerns law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty in 2018 as a result of felonious incidents. The law enforcement officers included in this report met certain criteria, such as they had full arrest powers and they ordinarily wore/carried a badge and firearm.

Overview

  • In 2018, 55 law enforcement officers died from injuries incurred in the line of duty during felonious incidents. (See Table 1.)
  • Line-of-duty deaths occurred in 28 states and Puerto Rico. (See Table 1.)
  • By region, 26 officers were feloniously killed in the South, 12 officers in the Midwest, 12 officers in the West, 4 officers in the Northeast, and 1 officer in Puerto Rico. (See Table 1.)
  • Of the officers feloniously killed, 28 were employed by city police departments, including 7 who were members of law enforcement agencies in cities with 250,000 or more inhabitants. (See Table 2.)

Victim profile

  • The average age of the officers who were feloniously killed in 2018 was 37 years old. (See Table 10.)
  • The slain officers’ average length of law enforcement service was 10 years. (See Table 11.)
  • Of the officers who died due to felonious incidents in 2018, 52 were male and 3 were female. (See Table 15.)
  • By race, 46 of the victim officers were White, 7 were Black/African American, and 2 were Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander. (See Table 15.)

Circumstances encountered by victim officer upon arrival at the scene of the incident (See Table 24.)

  • 23 officers died as a result of investigative or enforcement activities.
    • 8 were performing investigative activities.
    • 6 were involved in tactical situations. 
    • 3 were investigating suspicious persons or circumstances. 
    • 3 were interacting with wanted persons. 
    • 2 were conducting traffic violation stops. 
    • 1 was handling a person with a mental illness.
  • 11 officers were ambushed (entrapment/premeditation).
  • 6 officers were involved in pursuits.
    • 4 were involved in foot pursuits. 
    • 2 were involved in vehicular pursuits.
  • 4 officers responded to crimes in progress.
    • 2 were burglaries in progress. 
    • 1 was a report of a person with a firearm (no shots fired). 
    • 1 was a report of an other crime against property.
  • 3 officers were involved in arrest situations.
    • All 3 were attempting to control/handcuff/restrain the offender(s) during the arrest situations.
  • 2 officers were on administrative assignments while performing a prisoner transport.
  • 2 officers were assisting other law enforcement officers in foot pursuits.
  • 2 officers responded to disorders/disturbances.
    • 1 was responding to a disturbance call. 
    • 1 encountered a domestic violence situation.
  • 1 officer was involved in an unprovoked attack.
  • 1 officer was performing traffic control (crash scene, directing traffic, etc.).

Assignments (See Table 21.)

  • 36 officers were on assigned vehicle patrol when the felonious incidents occurred.
  • 3 officers were assigned to investigative/detective duties.
  • 3 officers were on tactical assignments (uniformed).
  • 3 officers were on plainclothes assignments.
  • 2 officers were on special assignments.
  • 2 officers were conducting court/prisoner security.
  • 2 officers were involved in other situations.
  • 4 slain officers were off duty (but acting in official capacities) at the time of the incidents.
  • 39 on-duty officers who died in 2018 were assisted at the times of the attacks.
  • 12 on-duty officers were alone and unassisted at the times of the attacks.

Weapons

  • Of the 55 officers feloniously killed in 2018, most (51) were killed with firearms. Of these, 37 were killed with handguns. (See Table 28.)
  • 14 officers fired their weapons; 5 officers attempted to fire their weapons. (See Table 18.)
  • 4 officers had their weapons stolen. (Based on Table 19.)
  • 4 officers were killed with their own weapons. (Based on Table 19.)
  • 23 officers were slain with firearms when they were less than 5 feet from the offenders. (See Table 32.)

Body armor

  • In 2018, 43 of the officers feloniously killed were wearing body armor at the time of the incidents. (See Table 35.)
  • Of these officers, 40 were killed with firearms (see Table 36) and received the following wounds:
    • 16 suffered wounds to the front of the head. 
    • 7 were shot in the front upper torso/chest. 
    • 6 were shot in the neck/throat. 
    • 5 were wounded in the side of the head. 
    • 4 were shot in the rear of the head. 
    • 1 was shot in the front lower torso/abdomen. 
  • In 1 incident, the location of the fatal wound could not be determined due to multiple wound locations.

Months, days, and times of incidents

  • More officers (8) died from felonious assaults that occurred in February than in any other month in 2018. (See Table 9.)
  • More officers (13) were involved in fatal assaults that occurred on Wednesdays than on any other day of the week. (See Table 6.)
  • 36 officers were fatally injured in assaults that happened between 12:01 p.m. and midnight. (See Table 7.)
  • 19 officers were fatally injured in assaults that happened between 12:01 a.m. and noon. (See Table 7.)

Profile of alleged known assailants

In 2018, 55 alleged offenders were identified in connection with the 55 law enforcement officers feloniously killed. Of those offenders, the following characteristics are known:

  • The average age of the alleged offenders was 33 years old. (See Table 40.)
  • The average height was 5 feet 10 inches tall, and the average weight was 183 pounds. (See Table 41.)
  • 53 alleged offenders were male; 2 were female. (See Table 42.)
  • 31 of the alleged offenders were White, 23 were Black/African American, and 1 was Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander. (See Table 42.)
  • 20 of the alleged offenders were under judicial supervision at the time of the incidents. (See Table 45.)
  • 15 of the alleged offenders were under the influence of alcohol and/or a controlled substance at the time of the fatal incidents. (See Table 45.)
  • 49 of the alleged offenders had prior criminal arrests. (See Table 46.)

Information about officers feloniously killed can be found in Tables 1-47.