Maricopa County Officer Involved Shootings Continue To Rise

Maricopa county has had an increased number of shootings that have involved officers as of late. This year alone represents a dramatic change compared to last year, where in all  of 2017, 43 officer and deputy involved shootings were reported. In Los Angeles that same year, there were 65. Although Los Angeles is the most heavily populated county in the country, this year, it has had fewer officer-involved shootings than Maricopa county. At the end of July 2018, 58 shootings have been reported in Maricopa county, with only 56 in Los Angeles Count. Both counties lists include any incident in which it resulted in an authority firing their weapon at an individual.

Out of the 58 Maricopa county officer and deputy-involved shootings, 32 of them involved the Phoenix police, which is the largest city in the county. Chief Jeri Williams, of the Phoenix Police, sent a memo to the community and said that these shootings do not involve a trend based on location, intersection, or neighborhood, and have occurred throughout the city. There has also been a 45 percent increase in the number of assaults against Phoenix officers, Williams says, with one of ten of those assaults involving a firearm. Williams also said that while she cannot make sense of why members of the community are taking an active aggression stance against officers, she plans to create opportunities for additional training for officers. The City of Phoenix has also hired an outside form to look closely at the department and all of the officer involved shootings in order to see if any insights can be gained. 

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