- The Washington Times - Monday, May 14, 2007

Forty-eight law-enforcement officers were killed last year as a result of felonious line-of-duty attacks — nearly half in the South — the FBI said in a report yesterday. The total was seven less than in 2005.

Preliminary statistics released by the FBI showed 22 law-enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty in the South; 11 in the West; seven in the Northeast; six in the Midwest; and two in the territory of Puerto Rico.

The 48 deaths, the FBI said, occurred in 47 separate incidents, with 41 being cleared by arrest or other means.

Of the officers killed, 12 were slain in arrest situations; nine were ambushed; nine were killed in traffic pursuits or stops; and eight were slain while answering disturbance calls. Six were killed while investigating suspicious persons or circumstances; two were killed in tactical situations; one officer was slain while handling, transporting or having custody of a prisoner; and one was slain while handling a mentally deranged person.

A breakdown of the data concerning the weapons used in the slayings of officers shows that firearms were the weapons most commonly used. Of the 46 officers who were fatally wounded with firearms, 35 were killed with handguns, eight were slain with rifles, two were killed with shotguns, and one officer was killed with an unknown type of firearm. Two officers were killed with vehicles.

At the time of the slayings, 26 officers were wearing body armor. During the fatal attacks, 11 victim officers fired their weapons, and seven attempted to fire their weapons. Four of the slain officers’ weapons were stolen, and one officer was killed with his own weapon.

In Virginia, those officers who died in a felonious attack in 2006 were:

• Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office Cpl. Eric E. Sutphin, 40, who was fatally shot Aug. 21 while participating in a massive manhunt for an escaped prisoner who was suspected of killing hospital security guard the previous morning. Cpl. Sutphin had served on the department for 13 years.

• Fairfax County Master Police Officer Michael E. Garbarino, 53, a 23-year veteran who died on May 17 from gunshot wounds sustained nine days earlier when a suspect opened fire on him and other officers in the parking lot of the Sully District Station on Stonecroft Boulevard in Chantilly.

c Fairfax County Detective Vicky Armel, 40, who was fatally shot May 8 when a suspect opened fire on her and other officers in the parking lot of the Sully District Station after he had carjacked a van moments earlier and drove into the police station’s back parking lot. She had served on the force for 17 years.

• Chesterfield County Police Officer Gary J. Buro, 34, who was fatally shot May 4 when he and another officer responded to a domestic disturbance in Ettrick. As the two officers entered the home, a man opened fire, killing Officer Buro and wounding his partner. Despite being shot five times, his partner was able to return fire and killed the suspect.

In Maryland, they were:

• State Division of Corrections Officer David W. McGuinn, 42, who was stabbed to death July 25 in the maximum-security Maryland House of Correction in Jessup while conducting a nightly prisoner count. He had been a corrections officer for two years.

• State Division of Corrections Officer Jeffery A. Wroten, 44, who died from a gunshot wound sustained the previous morning on Jan. 26, while guarding an inmate at Washington County Hospital in Hagerstown. He had been a corrections officer for four years.

In addition to officers feloniously killed, 66 officers nationwide lost their lives in the line of duty last year as a result of accidents in 63 separate incidents: 38 died as a result of automobile accidents; 11 were struck by vehicles; eight were involved in motorcycle accidents; four were killed in accidental shootings; three were in aircraft accidents; and two died as a result of bicycle accidents.

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