Craig Floyd, chairman of the National Law Enforcement Memorial Fund, counts 51 officers who have died on the job this year. Shooting deaths are down.
"More and more officers, based on studies, are wearing bullet-resistant vests," he explains. "More agencies are requiring officers to wear their body armor."
Traffic accidents remain the leading cause of officer fatalities, although Floyd points out traffic-related deaths reached a 34-year low in the first half of the year.
The police chief of Barwick, in south Georgia, died of a heart attack while at the scene of a domestic disturbance call in April.