2006_12_nypd.jpgAfter criticism about the NYPD's trigger finger, police spokesman Paul Browne says the NYPD is not at the top of cities with deadly police force. In fact, LA, Houston, Philadelphia, Chicago, and Miami have had more than NYC's 13 fatal police shootings, which is interesting given that NYC is the biggest city. Then again, we don't live in those cities for many reasons. From the Daily News:

In the 1990s, New York had an average of 25 people fatally shot by cops every year, but those numbers are down dramatically.

Cops killed 13, 14 and 11 people in 2002, 2003 and 2004, respectively. The nine slain in 2005 marked the lowest number since 1973, Browne said.

The total number of shots fired by city cops this year, including the 50 in the Sean Bell case, is 523, a 13% drop from last year.

"The 50 shots is definitely an anomaly," said Browne.

In addition, the number of cops involved in shooting incidents is down 9%, to 148 from 162.

The Reverend Al Sharpton, who has been questioning police brutality in the wake of Sean Bell's death, asked, in regards to the fatal police shooting of a mentally ill ax-wielding man over the weekend, "Could there have been a way to apprehend him or contain him without killing him?”

Photograph by Triborough on Flickr