WASHINGTON The FBI says that 72 law enforcement officers were killed in the line of duty last year, up from 56 the year before.
As CBS News correspondent Bob Orr reported in May, the first gunshots of 2011 rang out on New Year's Day at an Ohio trailer park. A deputy was killed.
The shootings continued from there. An officer was gunned down in a standoff in Wisconsin. Two more died in a shootout in Miami. And three were killed in St. Petersburg, Fla., a city that had not suffered a fatal police shooting in 30 years.
An additional 53 officers died in accidents, and 54,774 officers were assaulted in the line of duty.
The average age of officers killed in the line of duty was 38.
Of the 72 slayings, 23 were in arrest situations, 15 were ambushed, 11 were in traffic pursuits or stops, and nine were in tactical situations.
The report says 29 deaths happened in the South, 21 in the Midwest, 10 in the West, and 10 in the Northeast. The other two were in Puerto Rico.
Sixty-nine of the slain officers were males.