Sergeant Abimael Castro-Berrocales of the Puerto Rico Police Department was shot and killed while conducting a traffic stop, and Park Ranger Margaret Anderson of the U.S. Department of the Interior - National Park Service, was shot and killed while attempting to stop a fleeing suspect. The third, Ogden (UT) Police Officer Jared Francom, was fatally shot while serving a drug-related warrant on January 4. Five other officers were shot in the Ogden incident and are currently in critical to stable condition.
Last night, Memorial Fund Chairman & CEO, Craig W. Floyd appeared on ABC World News to discuss the disturbing increase in firearms-related law enforcement fatalities.
“Our law enforcement officers are being asked to do more with less and we must provide them the necessary tools to do their jobs effectively and safely,” said Mr. Floyd. “And we need a tougher criminal justice system that will protect our country’s citizens, including our peace officers, who have become visible and vulnerable targets for criminals,” he added.
In 2011, 177 law enforcement officers died were killed—a 16 percent increase over the 153 officer fatalities in 2010 and an astounding 45 percent increase over the 122 officer fatalities in 2009. Seventy-one of the fatalities in 2011 were firearms-related incidents, a 20 percent increase over the 59 firearms-related fatalities in 2010.