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Dangerous Year For Police Officers

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2011 has been a dangerous year for police officers across the country, when 173 law enforcement officers lost their lives.

Ryan McCandless, Nick Armstrong, and Ronald Johnson were three law enforcement officers in South Dakota who lost their lives in the line of duty

Even though there’s law enforcement out there that you've never met, it’s still almost considered like a family member,” said Sioux Falls Detective Sean Kooistra.

Officers McCandless and Armstrong were killed in Rapid City when making a routine stop.

“Having two police officers die in rapid city is a clear indicator that these dangers can exist absolutely anywhere,” said Kooistra.

Correctional officer Ronald Johnson was killed when two men attempted to escape from the South Dakota State Penitentiary.

“We need to remember that these people out there are human beings. They have families. They have spouses. They have children. They have parents. And they've chosen this occupation,” said Kooistra.

While the number is a harsh reality for police to face, officials say there's always a lesson to be learned.

“Its a great reminder that we need to be aware all the time of our surroundings and what's taking place and not to get lackadaisical,” said Kooistra.

Being cautious themselves, while remembering the 173 brothers and sisters in the fraternity of law enforcement that lost their lives trying to protect and serve.
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