The deaths of Michael Brown, Eric Garner, Walter Scott, and Freddie Gray have placed a national spotlight on police killings of black men. But these four cases are a small fraction of the hundreds of people cops have killed over the past few years.
Jishai Evers, for Vocativ, visualized what police killings looked like over the past 16 months in the map above using data from Killed by Police, which has logged more than 1,500 police killings since January 2014. The organization tracks all deaths to on- and off-duty nonmilitary law enforcement officers, regardless of reason, method, or justification.
Since these are only confirmed deaths, the data should be taken as the bare minimum number of killings. Killed by Police — and other groups, such as Fatal Encounters, which also tracks police killings — have begun collecting this type of data to make up for the federal government's scant records on police killings. The FBI collects some police killings data from local and state agencies, but as Vox's Dara Lind explained, it's very limited, since participation is voluntary.
This means it's hard to gauge whether the number of police killings is increasing. But even if the death toll isn't rising, it's very clear that public outrage is. The deaths of Brown, Garner, Scott, and Gray all led to tense protests over the past year as people demanded answers and justice for the slain men.