There are more than 800,000 sworn law enforcement officers now serving in the United States, which is the highest figure ever. About 12 percent of those are female.
Crime fighting has taken its toll. Since the first recorded police death in 1786, there have been more than 22,000 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty. Currently, there are 22,611 names engraved on the walls of the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial.
A total of 1,762 law enforcement officers died in the line of duty during the past 10 years, an average of 176 per year. There were 295 law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty in 2020.
According to the FBI’s Uniform Crime Report 2019 LEOKA report:
There have been 56,170 assaults against law enforcement officers (this includes federal, state, and local agencies) in 2019, resulting in 17,560 injuries.
The 1920s were the deadliest decade in law enforcement history, when a total of 2,530 officers died, or an average of almost 253 each year. The deadliest year in law enforcement history was 1930, when 312 officers were killed. That figure dropped dramatically in the 1990s, to an average of 160 per year.
The deadliest day in law enforcement history was September 11, 2001, when 72 officers were killed while responding to the terrorist attacks on America.
The New York City Police Department has lost more officers in the line of duty than any other department, with 954 deaths. Texas has lost 1,831 officers, more than any other state. The state with the fewest deaths is Vermont, with 25.
There are 1,209 federal officers listed on the Memorial, as well as 770 correctional officers and 70 military law enforcement officers.
There are 390 female officers listed on the Memorial; 24 female officers were killed in 2020.