There were 30 police officers shot in the line of duty throughout the United States in January, a 67% increase from the same month last year, the National Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) reported on Tuesday.
"As crime rates continue to rise across the country, the violence directed at law enforcement officers is skyrocketing," National FOP President Patrick Yoes said. "I have worked in law enforcement for 36 years, and the current level of violence targeted at our law enforcement officers is the worst I have ever seen."
Five of the officers shot in January were killed, according to the report.
It also noted that there have been four ambush-style attacks on law enforcement officers so far this year, which have resulted in five policemen shot, three of whom were killed.
Yoes said that "in just the first month of 2022, we saw the real-life consequences of — and felt the immense pain caused by — the recent surge in violent crime and the heinous acts of cowardly individuals whose sole motivation is to injure or kill a law enforcement officer," adding that "no officer should be at risk of being violently targeted simply because of the uniform they wear."
Yoes emphasized that "when a member of the public calls for help, law enforcement officers answer that call. Now, we are calling on Congress to expeditiously support law enforcement and pass the 'Protect and Serve Act' to better protect the brave men and women who wear the badge and send a clear message to those who would seek to do them harm."
The Protect and Serve Act would make it a federal crime to knowingly cause, or attempt to cause, serious bodily injury to a law enforcement officer, with offenders subject to imprisonment for up to 10 years, according to WTXL Tallahassee.
In addition, an offender could also receive a life sentence if a death results from his actions or the offense includes kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, or attempted murder.
This law would not only apply to federal law enforcement officers but also to state and local ones in cases where the federal government can establish jurisdiction over it.
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