Criminologist Phil Stinson:Police Kill Three People Every Single Day in the United States

PHILIP STINSON: Well, one of the problems is, we simply don’t have good data going back too many years. The best estimate that I can give you is that, over the last several years, on-duty police officers shoot and kill someone between 900 to 1,000 times each year. So, two to three times a day in this country, someone is shot and killed. That’s not even including the nonfatal shootings.

And I’ve been tracking officers who were charged with murder or manslaughter resulting from on-duty shootings since the beginning of 2005. To date, only 83 officers during that time period have been charged with murder or manslaughter resulting from an on-duty shooting. Of those 80 officers, only 30 have actually been convicted of a crime. Now, one thing that’s interesting that I just tabulated recently, in those 30 cases where an officer was convicted, having been charged with murder or manslaughter—sometimes they’re convicted of a lesser offense, such as official misconduct or something of that sort—but in those 30 cases, 19 of them had a victim who was an African American. And I really don’t know what to make of that yet.

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