Police Officer Line of Duty Deaths Up 500% in Arizona; 40% Nationwide
Statistics show increased dangers in law enforcement from 2009 to 2010  

2010 became one of the deadliest years in law enforcement, where the United States lost 160 police officers. According to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund (NLEOMF), officer line of duty deaths increased 40% over the previous year. Arizona saw an increase of 500%, losing an unimaginable six officers in 2010. Police Associations, like the Arizona Highway Patrol Association (AHPA), are speaking out to educate the public about their profession and the dangerous situations they encounter in order to keep the public safe.”The Arizona law enforcement death statistics are alarming to compare to what is happening on a national level,” states Sgt. Jimmy Chavez, President of the Arizona Highway Patrol Association. “It is clear our officers are combating an escalated criminal element. The police officers we have lost in Arizona were killed typically from career criminals.” 83% of the Arizona officers killed in the line of duty were from gunfire, above the national average. Arizona was tied for the sixth deadliest state in the nation to have lost peace officers in the line of duty.Craig W. Floyd, chairman of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, said a “more brazen, cold-blooded criminal element” faces officers and other first responders, and that often these offenders do not think twice about firing on officers. “Our law enforcement officers are being asked to do more today with less, and it is putting their lives at risk,” Floyd said. “In addition to their conventional crime-fighting responsibilities, our law officers are on the front lines in the war against terror here at home. Yet, there are fewer officers on the street and other precious resources, such as training and equipment dollars, are also being cut as a result of the economic downturn,” states Floyd.For the 13th year in a row, traffic accidents remained the number one threat to the lives of officers nationwide, causing 73 fatalities over the past year. The average age for officer deaths was 41, with an average service term of 12 years. Six of the officers killed were female, compared to one woman killed last year. The NLEOMF preliminary 2010 national officer fatality statistics can be found at: http://www.nleomf.org/assets/pdfs/reports/2010_Law_Enforcement_Fatalities_Report.pdf 

Below is a listing of all the peace officers Arizona has lot in the last two years:
In 2009, Arizona lost:
Officer Christopher Russell Marano
Arizona Department of Public Safety, AZ
End of Watch (EOW): Thursday, December 17, 2009
Cause of Death: Vehicle pursuit 

In 2010, Arizona lost:
Lieutenant Eric Lewis Shuhandler
Gilbert Police Department, AZ
EOW: Thursday, January 28, 2010
Cause of Death: Gunfire 

Police Officer Travis P. Murphy
Phoenix Police Department, AZ
EOW: Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Cause of Death: Gunfire 

Police Officer Carlos Ledesma
Chandler Police Department, AZ
EOW: Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Cause of Death: Gunfire 

Police Sergeant Sean Drenth
Phoenix Police Department, AZ
EOW: October 18, 2010
Cause of Death: Gunfire 

Border Patrol Agent Brian A. Terry
United States Department of Homeland Security, US
EOW: Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Cause of Death: Gunfire 

Police Officer James Lister
Arizona State University Police Department, AZ
EOW: Thursday, December 16, 2010
Cause of Death: Heart attack 

  

 

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