Record traffic fatalities and a surge in shooting deaths pushed the nation's death toll for police officers to its worst in nearly two decades.
The Associated Press reports via The Washington Post that with the exception of 2001, when 72 of 239 officers died during the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, 2007 was the worst since 1989.
The National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund and Concerns of Police Survivors jointly released preliminary data in a report issued today.
As of Wednesday, 186 officers had died on the line of duty -- 81 in traffic incidents and 69 in shootings. Overall, fatalities are up from 145 in 2006, when traffic crashes accounted for 76 deaths and another 52 officers were killed in shootings.