US Police Killings Under The Microscope

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It is not often publicised, the number of people that are killed by the US Police Force each year. We suspect it is bad, we pick up snippets from mass media, but it is rarely put under a spotlight for us to analyse. We don’t know how the States measures up against other countries, nor how individuals States compare to each other. But people are starting to take count, and once you start to look into it, the figures are very difficult to ignore. American police shoot dead far more individuals than any other police force in the world.

The Good Human wants to share the statistics from 2015 so far, and ask the question…why? What is the underlying issue behind this ugly symptom?

I actually hesitated before writing this post, as the bulk is based largely on statistics. I am conscious of how easy it is to skew data to make a point appear more plausible, and also wary of wild comparisons that are drawn to illustrate facts.

However, after reading up on the truth behind the fatal killings by the police force in the United States in just the first five months of 2015, I felt this a worthy cause to write about. This is not simply an opportunity to criticise the police, but rather a chance to look at the society on the whole. We have spoken about the necessity of the Police force an earlier post regarding the suppression of human evolution.

A British newspaper, The Guardian, have taken it upon themselves to count the number of deaths which occur at the hands of American police on their database. They are calling the project, ‘The Counted’ and have chosen to tell the stories behind the numbers, while looking at the demographics and geographical spread of killings. It is recognised as an imperfect tool, because it relies on various sources for information, and should be considered a live work in progress. You can find out their motivation for this by watching the following two minute clip.

The Numbers

Of course, the figures go out of date quickly, but as of the time that the video was created the numbers were as follows:
  • 16 individuals were killed due to being struck by a police vehicle
  • 34 individuals were killed due to altercations in police custody
  • 31 individuals were killed by taser
  • 476 individuals were shot dead

I must admit, it had not occurred to me that being tasered could be fatal, but apparently there are known safety concerns.

Critics argue that Tasers and other high-voltage stun devices can cause cardiac arrhythmia in susceptible subjects, possibly leading to heart attack or death in minutes by ventricular fibrillation, which leads to cardiac arrest and—if not treated immediately—to sudden death.

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