Statement From Memorial Fund CEO Craig W. Floyd on Shocking Spate of Law Enforcement Deaths This Week
Washington, DC—Seven law enforcement officers have died in the line of duty in as many days, six shot, underscoring the danger faced by the men and women who work to protect us all. This is tragic news for these officers, their families and the departments in which they served. Each was doing their job. Each played a vital role in their community. Each will be greatly missed.
This news is shocking. I cannot recall any time in recent years when six law enforcement professionals have been murdered by gunfire in multiple incidents in a single week. Already this year there have been eight officers shot and killed, compared to just one during the same period last year and represents a very troubling trend.
Hopefully, this serves as a stark reminder that there are some 900,000 law enforcement officers who go out every day and put their lives at risk for the safety and welfare of others. They have earned our respect and gratitude. We must now strengthen our resolve as a nation to always honor and remember the fallen, provide much needed support to the surviving family members, and do everything possible to make it safer for those officers who continue to serve.
Yesterday in Clayton County (GA), Major Greg Barney of the Riverdale (GA) Police Department was shot and killed while assisting the Clayton County (GA) Police Department execute a no-knock drug warrant at a house. Major Barney was working the exterior of the house when the suspect exited through the rear. The suspect shot Major Barney and was then shot by Clayton County police officers. Major Barney was transported to the hospital where he succumbed to his wounds. He is the eighth officer to have been shot and killed in 2016 and the first peace officer fatality from the state of Georgia this year.
Also yesterday, Fargo (ND) Police Officer Jason Moszer died of a gunshot wound sustained the previous day. Officer Moszer responded to a domestic disturbance call and the suspect was armed. While on the perimeter of the scene, Officer Moszer sustained a single gunshot wound, which eventually took his life. Officer Moszer is the seventh law enforcement officer to have been shot and killed in 2016 and the first law enforcement officer fatality in the state of North Dakota this year.
On Wednesday, two Harford County (MD) Sheriff’s Deputies were shot and killed after responding to a call about a suspicious person at a local restaurant. Deputy Patrick Dailey, the first killed, engaged the suspect at a table in the restaurant. The suspect pulled a gun and shot the deputy with no warning. Deputy Dailey is the fifth law enforcement officer shot and killed in 2016 and the first from the state of Maryland. The second, Deputy Mark Logsdon, was killed by the suspect as he fled after shooting Deputy Dailey. Deputy Logsdon is the sixth law enforcement officer to die of gunshot wounds in 2016 and the second from the state of Maryland this year.
Mesa County (CO) Deputy Sheriff Derek Greer died from gunshot wounds he received on Tuesday in Grand Junction (CO) while questioning a young man who was reported by citizens to be armed. During the interaction, the suspect pulled out his handgun and shot Deputy Greer several times, despite being tasered by the deputy. Deputy Greer is the fourth officer killed by gunfire in 2016 and the first from the state of Colorado.
Tulare County (CA) Deputy Sheriff Scott Ballantyne and a civilian pilot died yesterday in a plane crash. They were assisting deputies in the apprehension of a suspect when the aircraft lost altitude and crashed into a mountain. Deputy Ballantyne is the first officer to die in an airplane crash in 2016 and the first officer fatality from the state of California.
On February 5, Seaside (OR) Police Sergeant Jason Goodding was shot and killed while he and his partner were serving an arrest warrant. The officers approached the suspect on the street after recognizing him as someone with an outstanding felony warrant. After resisting arrest and being tasered, the suspect shot Sergeant Goodding three times. His partner shot and injured the shooter. Sgt. Goodding is the third officer to be shot and killed in 2016 and the first law enforcement fatality from the state of Oregon this year.
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About the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund
Established in 1984, the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund is a private non-profit organization dedicated to telling the story of American law enforcement and making it safer for those who serve. The Memorial Fund built and now operates and maintains the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial in Washington, DC, which contains the names of 20,538 officers who have died in the line of duty throughout U.S. history. The Memorial Fund is now building the National Law Enforcement Museum, which will tell the story of American law enforcement through high-tech, interactive exhibitions, historical artifacts and extensive educational programming. For more information, visit www.LawMemorial.org.