The UK Guardian has started keeping an interactive database of citizens murdered by local police departments across America in a project called “The Counted”. This year the Guardian estimates that a total of 479 deaths where as a result of crossing paths with law enforcement, roughly twice as many as those published up by the FBI.
The process uses social media, local news reports, and public records to catalog men and women killed by the police in the United States this year.
Jon Swaine, a reporter for The Guardian, spoke to NPR about the project:
We’re looking at local media reports. We’re looking at police and coroner press releases. Sometimes they’re not noticed by the media. We’re talking to people via this system that we’ve built now where the people can submit tips, can submit news if friends or if people they know or if they’ve even seen something happen. So we’re really – I mean, we’re making an attempt to cast an eye over the country, and obviously we’re open to the possibility that we, too, are missing some and they’re not being reported. But we thought better to make an effort and try to make a more comprehensive database.
Other groups like Killed By Police have been independently doing the same thing using corporate news reports of people killed by U.S. law enforcement officers since May 1, 2013.
This is what 16 months of police killings in the United States looks like. Nearly 1,500 police-involved deaths between January 1, 2014 and April 30, 2015
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