TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI)- A recent report shows an unsettling number of blue line officers lives lost in 2018. This includes Terre Haute fallen officer, Rob Pitts.
A total of 73 law enforcement officers have been in killed in the line of duty during the first half of this year. According to a preliminary report form the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund, this is a 12 percent increase from this time in last year.
The numbers didn't come as a surprise for Ryan Adamson, a Terre Haute police officer.
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"There is no news stories or national statistics that are going to detour us from doing our job," Adamson said. "We are going to continue to go out and make this community safer regardless of how many officers are killed in the line of duty."
Adamson says it has been a tough year for the Terre Haute Police Department. They lost officer Rob Pitts who served with the department for 16 years. Pitts died in a shooting in May.
"You know what Rob Pitts wouldn't want us to do?" Adamson said. "He wouldn't want us to sit at home and worry about it. He would want us to continue to do our job and go out and do it to the best of our ability."
The report shows data through June 30, 2018. The leading cause of law enforcement deaths was firearm-related incidents. 27 officers were killed in traffic-related incidents and 15 died due to other causes.
"I think the violence against police is increasing," Dale Blunk, a Terre Haute police officer said. "It's not just what you see on the media. We feel it in our police department."
According to the report, eight of the firearm-related incidents happened when trying to arrest someone. Six were killed responding to domestic calls and three were killed as a result of being ambushed.
"You never know what could happen at any given moment to us," Blunk said. "Things can go wrong very, very quickly."
Wednesday marks the seven-year anniversary of officer Brent Long from the Terre Haute Police Department. He was killed in the line of duty. The city built a statue in memorial for him outside the department.
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