At Current Rate, Police In U.S. Would Kill 1,100 People This Year


Police in the U.S. are killing people at a rate that would result in 1,100 fatalities by the end of the year, says a Guardian investigation that recorded an average of three people killed per day in the first half of 2015. The Counted, a project reporting and crowdsourcing names and other data on every death caused by law enforcement, found 547 people killed by the end of June. Of those, 478 were shot while 31 died after being shocked by a Taser, 16 died after being struck by police vehicles, and 19, including Freddie Gray in Baltimore, died after altercations in police custody.

When adjusted to reflect the population, the totals indicate that black people are being killed by police at more than twice the rate of white and Hispanic or Latino people. Black people killed by police were also significantly more likely to have been unarmed. Brittany Packnett, an activist and member of Barack Obama's Task Force on 21st Century Policing, described the continued disproportionate killing of unarmed black Americans as “appalling.” The U.S. government does not keep a comprehensive record of people killed by police. The FBI runs a voluntary program for law enforcement agencies to submit numbers of “justified homicides” if they choose.

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