The Anoka Police Department honored all law enforcement officers killed in the line of duty at its annual open house and memorial service Tuesday.
Chief Phil Johanson told visitors that in 2011, 166 officers across the United States were killed while on the job. That number was up slightly from 163 the previous year.
“In the past five years 819 officers in the U.S. have given their lives so we can live in peace,” said Johanson. Nine of those 819 were in Minnesota.
Despite doing what they can to minimize risks, law enforcement can be a very dangerous job, said the chief.
“The fact is there is risk in this job,” Johanson said.
The most dangerous situations for an officer are arrests, responses to domestic cases and disturbances as well to help people with mentally illness in need of assistance.
The Anoka Police Department has lost one officer in the line of duty. Back in 1947, Verl Whinery was killed while directing traffic at an accident at the intersection of Seventh Avenue and Highway 10 (now East River Road). Whinery had been on the job less than a year.
Following Tuesday’s memorial service, Officer George Walker did a demonstration with his K9 partner Barrett. The police dog joined the Anoka PD two years ago, is currently certified to detect narcotics and is training for certification in other police work.
Mandy Moran Froemming is at [email protected]