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Report: Feds do not track police killings, crimes

How many people were killed by police in the United States last year?

The answer? No one knows.

The federal government, which tracks the online activity of millions of Americans, doesn't track the total number of people killed by police.

The Washington Times reports the FBI tracks the number of times police kill convicted felons -- what it calls "justifiable homicides" -- but does not track how many people who have not been convicted of a crime have been killed.

For the last few years, the number of justifiable homicides has been "steady," about 400 people a year.

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In 2012, the last year for which data is available, 410 felons were killed by police. In the same year, the FBI says 47 law enforcement officials were killed by criminals.

The South is by far the most dangerous region to be a cop -- 22 officers were killed as a result of criminal acts here, eight officers in the West, six officers in the Northeast, five in the Midwest, and six officers were killed in the U.S. territories of Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

Another news nugget?

The Justice Department, which would prosecute police in civil rights cases, does not list crimes committed by police in its annual compendium of crime statistics, according to The Washington Times.

The feds also do not track how many times police are prosecuted in killings that were not considered "justified."

The Los Angeles Times says U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder, who is visiting Ferguson today, should announce the federal government will begin tracking the death of all civilians at the hands of law enforcement.

I don't have all the answers, but that sounds like a better use of public funds than a $3 million study that put shrimp on a treadmill.

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