Washington, DC - Patrick Yoes, National President of the Fraternal Order of Police, released the following statement regarding the National FOP’s year-end report on officers shot and killed in the line of duty:
“Last year, over 330 police officers were shot in the line of duty. With the COVID-19 pandemic behind us and after so many Americans have seen the tragic consequences of the defund the police movement, it was our hope that these numbers would be a high-water mark. We were wrong.
“Instead, 378 officers were shot in the line of duty in 2023, the highest number the FOP has ever recorded. Thankfully, because of dramatic improvements in medical trauma science and anti-ballistic technology, the lethality of these attacks has been reduced and only 46 of the officers shot in the line of duty were killed. There were 115 ambush-style attacks on law enforcement officers this year, which resulted in 138 officers shot, 20 of whom were killed.
“Many will often look at this data and just see numbers, but we MUST remember that they represent heroes—fathers, mothers, sons, and daughters. This scale of violence against our officers is horrifying and simply unsustainable. It is no wonder that our profession is facing a recruitment and retention crisis. What father or mother would want their child to become an officer knowing the dangers they face every day?
“When this Congress convened, I asked that they act swiftly and pass the Protect and Serve Act, which would address the national problem of ambushes and unprovoked attacks on our nation's law enforcement officers. They have not done so. Today, given these numbers, what more would it take for lawmakers in Washington to see how necessary it is to pass this legislation?
“I call on Americans in every community across the country to join us in taking a stand—to say, ‘Enough is Enough!’ Truthfully, the violence against those sworn to protect and serve is beyond unacceptable; it’s a stain on our society, and it must end. It is incumbent upon our elected officials and community leaders to stand up, support our heroes, and speak out against the violence against law enforcement officers.”