Posted: 5:20 pm Wednesday, August 20th, 2014
By George Mathis
How many people were killed by police in the United States last year?
The answer? No one knows.
The federal government, which tracks the online activity of millions of Americans, doesn’t track the total number of people killed by police.
The Washington Times reports the FBI tracks the number of times police kill convicted felons — what it calls “justifiable homicides” — but does not track how many people who have not been convicted of a crime have been killed.
For the last few years, the number of justifiable homicides has been “steady,” about 400 people a year.
In 2012, the last year for which data is available, 410 felons were killed by police. In the same year, the FBI says 47 law enforcement officials were killed by criminals.
The South is by far the most dangerous region to be a cop — 22 officers were killed as a result of criminal acts here, eight officers in the West, six officers in the Northeast, five in the Midwest, and six officers were killed in the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.
Another news nugget?
The Justice Department, which would prosecute police in civil rights cases, does not list crimes committed by police in its annual compendium of crime statistics, according to The Washington Times.
The feds also do not track how many times police are prosecuted in killings that were not considered “justified.”
The Los Angeles Times says U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who is visiting Ferguson today, should announce the federal government will begin tracking the death of all civilians at the hands of law enforcement.
I don’t have all the answers, but that sounds like a better use of public funds than a $3 million study that put shrimp on a treadmill.
More news I stumbled across today on the Interwebs:
- St. Louis gun sales surge
- Unarmed man killed by Utah police
- Straight men and lesbians enjoy sex most
- Charlotte student claims she was suspended for saying ‘bless you’ after sneeze
- Solar power plant incinerates birds in midair
- Amazon reviews of ‘My Parents Open Carry’ somewhat hilarious
- Man drives stolen electric cart to meet probation officer
- Child molester sues after being raped in prison
- Genetically engineered pig hearts work more than a year in baboons
- Superhero mascots in NYC seek respect from police
- Popular music hits new low
- Woman, 99, makes one dress a day for girls in Africa
About the Author
News to Me is a blog (not a news article) written Monday-Friday and any other day George finds spare time to do such a thing. George has been a local news editor with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution since 1999. Earlier attempts at journalism included stops in Valdosta, Cordele and Tifton. A lifelong resident of Georgia, he was raised in Berrien County. He’s fond of guitars, homemade beer and finding interesting news on the wire, Internet and Twitter.