Gun deaths of police officers in 2016 are double what they were the same time last year, according to data from the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund.
Fifteen officers have been killed in firearm-related deaths this year, while only seven suffered gun deaths at the same time in 2015. Despite the increase in gun-related deaths, the total number of deaths is slightly less than the same time last year. The difference comes partially because more officers died in 2015 from traffic incidents. In 2015, 13 officers had been killed in traffic incidents by this time last year, but only nine have died so far this year.
Colorado and Maryland top the list with three police fatalities each. California, Illinois, and Texas have two each. The remaining states have either one or no police deaths. The year saw an even higher spike of police gun deaths earlier this year, hitting a thousand percent increase, having only recently leveled off.
In one incident, Greenville, S.C., police saw confirmed gang member Deontea Perry Mackey, 17, on March 18 and stopped to conduct a field interview. But Mackey fled, and Officer Allen Jacobs, a 28-year-old Iraq War veteran, chased him, Greenville Online reports.
Police say Mackey turned and opened fire on Jacobs, hitting him multiple times and killing him. Mackey ran another half mile before officers had him surrounded. Police say Mackey called his mother on the phone and then killed himself.
“This is everyone’s worst nightmare,” Police Chief Ken Miller told Greenville Online. “He was out doing our work. He’s a member of our community, and he was out there trying to keep us safe.”
A local Burger King manager was fired over allegations that she insulted the dead officer, saying he “got what he deserved.”
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