After two young Black men were killed by officers in New York City and Cincinnati this week, the death toll for the number of people killed by police in the nation rose to 500 — more than twice the rate most recently recorded by the FBI in 2013, according to The Guardian.
The numbers are on track to exceed 1,000 by the end of the year, the report notes. The numbers show that African-Americans killed by police so far in 2015 have been disproportionately high, and both White and Hispanic Americans now make up proportions of those killed by police that are smaller than their shares of the population.
The reason for the uptick in violence is unclear, but the U.S government’s record of police-involved shootings, which is run by the FBI, counted 461 “justifiable homicides” by law enforcement in all of 2013, the latest year for which official data is available, the report says. The agency runs a voluntary program that allows law enforcement to submit numbers of “justified homicides.”
Isiah Hampton, 19, was fatally shot by New York police department officers at an apartment building in the Bronx on Wednesday morning, according to police chiefs. His death followed that of Quandavier Hicks, 22, during a confrontation with Cincinnati officers at a house on Tuesday night.
Their names were added to The Counted, a project by the Guardian to report and crowd-source names and a series of other data on every death caused by law enforcement in the US this year…
Among the first 500 deaths, 49.6% of people were white, 28.2% were black and 14.8% were Hispanic/Latino. According to the 2013 census, the US population is 62.6% white, 13.2% black and 17.1% Hispanic/Latino.
Men made up 95.2 percent of the first 500 people killed, while 4.8 percent were women, the report notes. There are slightly more women than men among the general population.
We hope that the FBI begins to record police-involved shootings in a meaningful fashion. Until then, we are grateful that today’s activists continue to shine the light on issues of excessive force in communities of color across the nation.