US police killed a record number of people in 2023: Research
The number of people killed by police officers in the United States reached a new high in 2023, according to new research. The Mapping Police Violence project, which has been tracking police killings in the country since 2013, reported that officers killed 1,329 people last year, representing nearly a 19-percent increase over the 11-year span. The number of deaths at the hands of police officers has been on the rise since 2020, the year thousands of protesters and civil rights activists joined in Black Lives Matter demonstrations after the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer.
Mapping Police Violence noted there were just 14 days that a police officer did not kill someone in 2023. The project defines police killings as any “incident where a law enforcement officer (off-duty or on-duty) applies, on a civilian, lethal force resulting in the civilian being killed.” Last year also represented the sharpest increase in deaths from the year prior, with a 6.3 percent increase from 2022.
There were 1,250 police killings in 2022, 1,178 in 2021 and 1,251 in 2020. The project, which is run by Campaign Zero, also reported that Black people were about 2.9 times more likely to be killed by officers than white people between 2013 and 2023. Among last year’s deaths was Tyre Nichols –a 29-year-old Black man who died after a traffic stop that resulted in a fatal beating from police officers in Memphis, Tenn.
The five officers involved in the incident have been indicted on federal charges of second-degree murder, aggravated assault, aggravated kidnapping, official misconduct and official oppression. USA Today first reported on last year’s data. Abdul Nasser Rad, managing director of research and data at Campaign Zero, told the newspaper that 90 percent of those killed in 2023 were shot.
More than 800 suspects were injured in officer involved shootings last year, according to the organization.