July 3, 2022

Deputy Matt & Others Who Serve

The individual voices and opinions of some first responders

NYT Blames Cops Instead of Criminals

Once again, the liberals at the New York Times set out to blame the horrible evil cops for deaths that were a result of criminals violently resisting arrest. This time, they are claiming traffic stops for minor violations are the problem.

The article is actually fairly short, and despite the fact that it is claimed to be an “investigation examines why traffic stops can escalate into fatal encounters and how hidden financial incentives increase the risks” it completely fails in the terms of an investigation. Not only did they fail to mention the one single constant found in every single instance, they failed to cite any of their sources for information, and they clearly ignored other sources.

What is that one commonality that is shared by every single case, the commonality that the NYT ignored? The fact that in every case of a motorist being shot and killed by a cop, the motorist was failing to comply after being stopped for violating a law. Every. Single. One.

Beyond failing to comply, in all but a few instances, the suspect was violently resisting. It is interesting to note that the one case they actually list by name, Daunte Wright, the suspect was not shot intentionally but was instead shot in a tragic accident after the officer grabbed her gun instead of her Taser. Still present in that instance though, was the fact that Wright was violently resisting.

The Times then proceeds to minimize the risks faced by officers during traffic stops. They claim “Trainers often use misleading statistics and gory dashcam videos of drivers gunning down officers during traffic stops to teach cadets to be hypervigilant, The Times found.” To bolster that statement, they say “Over the past five years, and at least 100 million traffic stops, motorists who had been pulled over killed about 60 police officers, primarily by gunshots, according to a Times analysis.”

Well apparently that “Times analysis” is unaware of an annual report produced by the FBI called the Law Enforcement Officers Killed and Assaulted Program, more commonly known as LEOKA. They also chose to limit their claim to officers killed, as if the only time an officer is justified to use deadly force is if they are killed (undeniably illogical argument). In fact, officers are justified in using deadly force BEFORE they are killed. Additionally, officers wear bullet proof vests and are often saved by that vest when they are shot. Other times, officers may be attacked but not actually injured before they shoot and stop the suspect. Trying to use the number of officers killed is a blatantly false comparison.

Let’s take a quick look at some of those LEOKA statistics that the NYT so conveniently ignored (see the table below). In 2020 alone, not the 5 years that the Times supposedly analyzed, 5,067 officers were assaulted while conducting a traffic stop or being engaged in a pursuit. Of those cases, 351 of the suspects had a firearm and another 40 had a knife.

LEOKA Stats for 2020

Moving beyond 2020, the last year for which the statistics are available, in 2019, 4,687 officers were assaulted, 267 with a gun and another 41 with a knife. In 2018, 4,809 in total were assaulted, 241 with a gun and 37 with a knife. In 2017, 5,108 cops were assaulted in a traffic stop, 295 with a gun and another 48 with a knife. And lastly, in 2016, 4,587 total assaulted, 287 of them with a gun and 39 with a knife.

It’s funny, all this data is right there, available to anyone with an internet connection (so literally just about everyone on the planet), yet the New York Times “investigation” failed to find it. Let’s take a look at the actual total compared to the Times total. In the last 5 years (for which the reports are available), a total of 24,258 cops were assaulted while conducting a vehicle stop or pursuit). Of those, 1,441 were assaulted with a firearm and another 205 were assaulted with a knife.

Those are the actual numbers, but the NYT said “about 60 police officers” were killed during traffic stops.

Oddly enough, the NYT was sure to point out that those “about 60″ cops that were killed were only a small portion of the “at least 100 million traffic stops.” So, using that number, the “more than 400″ motorists killed by the cops equates to 0.0004% chance of a motorist being shot by a cop during a traffic stop. That number reduces to 0% chance if the motorist cooperates and does not violently resist.

What I do not understand is why liberals feel the need to take any and all blame off those who are violating the law, off those who are resisting, assaulting and killing the cops, and instead try to flip that and somehow place the blame on the cops, the people whose job it is to enforce the laws. The New York Times missed a huge opportunity to actually save lives. Instead, their screed will instead bolster those who violate the law and fight the cops, which will only serve to increase the numbers they claim to want to reduce.