Texas leads nation in police officer deaths in 2008

Fourteen officers in the state of Texas died in 2008. That number is down from 22 last year, but an increase from 2006 when nine officers were killed.

Lieutenant Mike Eppler of the Denison Police Department says although all officers are trained to handle themselves in life-threatening situations, it is unfortunate to lose any of them.

Eppler says many of them go to work everyday knowing that they may not make it out of some situations alive.

"Officers know going into this job that it’s a dangerous job, but you don’t think about it. You just remember that you need to be safe, and you’re going to keep other people safe. That’s what you think about," Eppler said.

Texas had the highest in officer deaths this year, followed by California and Florida. Eppler says they are working diligently in training to help officers better protect themselves and residents.

Here is a state-by-state breakdown of the 140 law-enforcement officers killed in 35 states in the line of duty in 2008, as released by two police support groups.

State...........Fatalities
Ala............4
Ariz............4
Ark............2
Calif............12
Colo...........2
Conn...........1
Fla...........8
Ga............7
Ill............5
Ind...........2
Ky...........2
La...........5
Md............4
Mass...........1
Mich...........2
Miss............1
Mo...........6
Mont............1
Neb............1
Nev...........1
N.J...........3
N.M............1
N.Y...........4
N.C............4
Ohio...........5
Okla...........4
Ore...........2
Pa...........8
S.C............3
Tenn...........2
Texas...........14
Utah........... 2
Va............4
Wash............1
Wis...........1
Federal ...........8
Territorial...........3

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Source: National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and Concerns of Police Survivors.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)


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