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FBI statistics show dramatic increase in officers intentionally killed in line of duty

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INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – The FBI just released statistics for law enforcement officers killed and assaulted in the line of duty in 2016. The statistics highlight nationwide data on officers killed in the last few years.

In total, 118 officers were killed in the line of duty in 2016. Of those, 66 were killed intentionally. That’s a significant increase from 2015, where 41 officers were killed by criminal acts.

Howard County Deputy Carl Koontz is one of those 66 officers. He was killed last year while serving a search warrant.

FBI stats show last year 17 officers were killed while ambushed, 13 were killed answering calls for disturbances, and 9 were killed while investigating suspicious people or circumstances.

Indiana State Police Cpt. Dave Bursten said they’re taking note of the increase in officer deaths.

“When we look back historically, we know that the law enforcement profession is a dangerous one. It seems more dangerous now than it has been in the past,” he said.

So far this year, 104 officers have been killed in the line of duty, including Southport Police Lt. Aaron Allan. He was one of 38 officers killed so far this year by gunfire. Last year, 63 officers were killed by gunfire.

While the increase is concerning, Cpt. Bursten said officers won’t change the way they respond to emergencies.

“We always have to go to where the problem is. The only way to stop that is stop responding to calls. I don’t think the public wants us to do that. It would be a scary situation to see what kind of society we would live in without law enforcement.”

Fourteen officers killed in 2016 were from the Midwest.