Norwegian police fired guns only twice in 2014, both times nonlethally, according to statistics from Norway's government. The recently released report presents an image of a nation with limited police violence, with officers rarely using physical force, especially compared to the United States, where 487 people have been shot to death by police so far this year, according to data compiled by the Washington Post.
The data shows Norwegian officers drew and threatened to use their weapons on only 42 occasions in 2014, the lowest number in the past 12 years, and only two people have been killed in officer-involved shootouts since 2002. The number of times police in Norway fired a shot dropped 33 percent last year -- from three shots in 2013. No one was injured by either of the two shots fired in 2014, according to the data.
Perhaps one of the most striking revelations from the statistics comes from 2011, the year of the Utoya right-wing terror attack on a summer camp, where Anders Behring Breivik killed 77 people, mostly children. Norwegian police fired only one shot that year, RT reported.
In Norway, the homicide rate per 100,000 people was roughly half that of the United States from 2000 to 2012, according to data compiled by the U.N. Office On Drugs and Crime. Although gun ownership in Norway is common, the nation has exceptionally low rates of violence and homicides, according to the Los Angeles Times. Police officers in Norway rarely carry guns or other lethal weapons.
Police violence and brutality in the United States has fallen under intense scrutiny this past year after the deaths of several unarmed black males at the hands of police, including Tamir Rice, 12, in Ohio, began a national movement against racism and excessive violence in the police force. While the United States is much larger than Norway, the rates of shootings by police is still disproportionately high, the Washington Post said.