CRIME
12/29/2014 09:24 am ET Updated Dec 29, 2014

The Year In Police Killings

FILE - In a Monday, Aug. 18, 2014 file photo, protestors autograph a sketch of Michael Brown during a protest, in Atlanta. Mi
FILE - In a Monday, Aug. 18, 2014 file photo, protestors autograph a sketch of Michael Brown during a protest, in Atlanta. Michael Brown Jr. was on the verge of starting college, eager to launch himself into the adult world. Instead, on Monday heᅢ까タᅡルll be mourned at his funeral, more than two weeks after his fatal shooting by a white police officer. (AP Photo/David Goldman, File)

Has the country reached a tipping point?

The killings of Michael Brown, Eric Garner and John Crawford III, among others, by police officers this year focused national attention on race, police violence and the apparent unwillingness of grand juries to indict those who carry a badge.

The incidents spurred research that found black men are 21 times more likely to be killed by police than their white counterparts. And recent reports have found an accurate count of all police killings is nearly impossible because of the way records are kept.

What follows are some of the most well-known and controversial instances of officers using deadly force in 2014.

  • Michael Brown
    On Aug. 9, the unarmed 18-year-old was <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/25/ferguson-timeline_n_6220166.html" ta
    Pool via Getty Images
    On Aug. 9, the unarmed 18-year-old was shot dead by Ferguson, Missouri, Police Officer Darren Wilson. Wilson claimed he shot Brown as the teen ran at him after the two fought over his gun. But multiple witnesses, including the majority of those heard by a grand jury, said Brown did not run toward the officer. Many said Brown had his hands up when he was shot and killed. On Nov. 24, a grand jury voted not to indict Wilson, setting off protests across America.
  • Eric Garner
    New York City police suspected Eric Garner of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes on July 17. In an attempt to place him under
    Associated Press
    New York City police suspected Eric Garner of selling loose, untaxed cigarettes on July 17. In an attempt to place him under arrest, officer Daniel Pantaleo put Garner in what New York Police Department Commissioner Bill Bratton described as a chokehold, a move banned by the department. Garner can be seen in a video of the incident saying he can’t breathe as Pantaleo holds him. He is later pronounced dead at a hospital. A Staten Island grand jury voted on Dec. 2 not to indict Pantaleo, setting off another wave of national protests.
  • Tamir Rice
    On Nov. 22, 12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot by police in Cleveland who were responding to reports of someone with a gun. The
    Associated Press
    On Nov. 22, 12-year-old Tamir Rice was shot by police in Cleveland who were responding to reports of someone with a gun. The weapon he had in his hand was a pellet gun. Rice died a day later in the hospital. Video footage released by police showed that Timothy Loehmann, the officer who killed Rice, shot him within two seconds of exiting his car.
  • Akai Gurley
    On Nov. 20, 28-year-old <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/22/akai-gurley-nypd_n_6205492.html" target="_blank">Ak
    Associated Press
    On Nov. 20, 28-year-old Akai Gurley exited his girlfriend's apartment in a Brooklyn, New York, public housing building. He started going down a dark stairwell that had a broken light. Rookie New York Police Department Officer Peter Liang, who had his gun drawn as he patrolled the stairwell, shot and killed Gurley. Police said the shooting was accidental. The New York Daily News reported that, instead of calling an ambulance, Liang texted his union representative after he shot Gurley. A grand jury will determine whether Liang faces charges.
  • John Crawford III
    On Aug. 5, 22-year-old John Crawford III was shot and <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/16/john-crawford-iii-fam
    Associated Press
    On Aug. 5, 22-year-old John Crawford III was shot and killed by police inside a Beavercreek, Ohio, Walmart. Crawford was carrying an air rifle that he had picked up inside the store. Cops were called to investigate a man waving what could be a firearm. Police said Crawford refused to put down the gun and turned toward them in a threatening way. But lawyers representing Crawford's family say the officers were reckless and negligent. A grand jury voted not to indict either of the officers involved in the killing.
  • Ezell Ford
    On Aug. 11, Los Angeles police conducted "an investigative stop" and interrogated unarmed 25-year-old Ezell Ford. At some poi
    KTLA
    On Aug. 11, Los Angeles police conducted "an investigative stop" and interrogated unarmed 25-year-old Ezell Ford. At some point, Ford was shot and killed. An LAPD statement on the killing said, "During the stop a struggle ensued, which resulted in an officer-involved-shooting." But witnesses told The Huffington Post that police shouted, "Shoot him," moments before three bullets hit Ford, who was on the ground. The case remains under investigation.
  • Samantha Ramsey
    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/09/samantha-ramsey_n_6123820.html?1418840163" target="_blank">Samantha Ramsey
    Facebook
    Samantha Ramsey was killed as she tried to drive away from a party on April 26 in Boone County, Kentucky. Boone County deputy Tyler Brockman said he shot Ramsey after she ran over his foot and forced him onto the hood of her car. He said he feared for his life and the lives of others when he opened fire. But witnesses said Brockman jumped onto the hood of her car and killed her unnecessarily. In November, a grand jury voted not to indict Brockman.
  • Darrien Hunt
    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/11/03/darrien-hunt-shooting-jus_n_6097096.html" target="_blank">Darrien Hunt</a>
    Associated Press
    Darrien Hunt was shot seven times by Saratoga Springs, Utah, police who were investigating reports of a man with a sword on Sept. 10 at a shopping center. Hunt's family said the sword was a replica. Police said Hunt refused to give up his sword and then started swinging it at them. An autopsy report determined that Hunt was shot seven times by officers, including several times in the back as he fled from police. The Hunt family's attorney, Bob Sykes, disputed assertions from cops that the 22-year-old acted aggressively. "I think it's a whitewash. I think it's an exaggeration," Sykes said. "I think they ignored good hard evidence to the contrary."
  • Rumain Brisbon
    Phoenix Police Officer Mark Rine was investigating a tip that 34-year-old <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/12/10/m
    Associated Press
    Phoenix Police Officer Mark Rine was investigating a tip that 34-year-old Rumain Brisbon was selling drugs inside an SUV on Dec. 2. Police said Brisbon didn't obey the officer's commands and instead fled inside an apartment complex where a struggle ensued. During the struggle, Rine mistook a pill bottle in Brisbon's pants for a gun and fatally shot him, according to police. Brisbon was unarmed, though police found a gun in his SUV. Prosecutors are investigating whether Rine should face charges.
  • Kajieme Powell
    Less than two weeks after Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson, Missouri, 25-year-old Kajieme Powell was shot and killed by p
    The Washington Post via Getty Images
    Less than two weeks after Michael Brown was killed in Ferguson, Missouri, 25-year-old Kajieme Powell was shot and killed by police in nearby St. Louis. Police were called to a convenience store to investigate a man causing a disturbance and acting irrationally. They found Powell with a knife in his hand, and graphic video shows Powell approaching them yelling, "Shoot me." But the video also appears to undermine some of the initial assertions from police. Instead of holding the knife in an overhand grip, as police said, Powell had his hands at his sides. Powell also did not get as close to the cops as they originally claimed.
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