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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Washington

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, May 14, 2018

Recognition of Law Enforcement Service and Sacrifice During National Police Week

FBI Releases 2017 Statistics on Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted

May 14, 2018 – United States Attorney General Sessions, together with Joseph H. Harrington, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, recognized the service and sacrifice of federal, state, local, and tribal police officers on the occasion of National Police Week, and commented on the FBI's 2017 Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted report.

In October 1962, Congress passed and President Kennedy signed a joint resolution declaring May 15th as National Peace Officers Memorial Day to honor law enforcement officers killed or disabled in the line of duty. The resolution also created National Police Week as an annual tribute to law enforcement service and sacrifice. During Police Week, which is observed from Sunday, May 13 to Saturday, May 19, 2018, our nation celebrates the contributions of police officers from around the country, recognizing their hard work, dedication, loyalty and commitment in keeping our communities safe.

“One officer death is too many,” U.S. Attorney General Sessions said. “While we are inexpressibly grateful to have had a decrease in the number of officers killed in the line-of-duty last year, the number is still far too high. At the Department of Justice, we honor the memories of the fallen and we pray for their families. We are also following President Trump's Executive Orders to back the women and men in blue, to enhance law enforcement safety, and to reduce violent crime in America. Those priorities will help keep every American safe, including those who risk their lives for us. As always, we have their backs and they have our thanks.”

United States Attorney Harrington said “National Police Week is an opportunity to reinforce our strong commitment to law enforcement both here in the State of Washington and across the country. Every day our law enforcement officers carry out their sworn duties, risk is a constant companion. It is a privilege to honor these men and women who patrol our streets, guard our communities, and keep us safe from harm.”

Spokane will be hosting two events to honor law enforcement officers in the State of Washington who were killed or died in the line of duty next week:

- 5th Annual Candlelight Ceremony, Monday, May 14th at 7:30 p.m. at the Memorial, 1100 W. Mallon; and

- 31st Annual Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Ceremony, Tuesday May 15th at 11:30 a.m. at 1100 W. Mallon.

According to statistics collected by the FBI, 93 law enforcement officers were killed in line-of-duty incidents in 2017 – a 21 percent decrease from 2016 when 118 law enforcement officers were killed in line-of-duty incidents. Additionally, in 2017 there were 46 law enforcement officers killed in line-of-duty incidents as a result of felonious acts – this is a 30 percent decrease from 2016, when 66 law enforcement officer were killed in line-of-duty incidents as a result of felonious acts. For the full comprehensive data tables about these incidents and brief narratives describing the fatal attacks and selected assaults resulting in injury, please see the 2017 edition of Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted report, released today.

The names of all 93 fallen officers nationwide were formally dedicated on the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, during the 30th Annual Candlelight Vigil on the evening of May 13, 2018. So that people across the country could experience this unique and powerful ceremony, the vigil was livestreamed. The Candlelight Vigil is one of many commemorative events taking place in the nation’s capital during National Police Week 2018.

For more information about other National Police Week events, please visit www.policeweek.org. To access the FBI's 2017 Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted report, please visit www.fbi.gov.

Updated May 14, 2018