17 police officers in the United States have been killed by gunfire in the line of duty in 2018. One right here in Kentucky.
Police are concerned for their safety after Scotty Hamilton, a Pikeville Police Department Officer was killed just yesterday.
"Police are human, we are here to protect, we are not wanting to be a target on everybody's back." says Darrell Butler, a Cave City Police Department Captain.
They take the job of serving and protecting their communities, but now many police officers feel that they really have a target on their backs.
"It makes me worry because you never know anymore if you're walking up to a person just going to give them a warning, if they are going to shoot you, if you walk up to the car." says Darrell Butler.
We spoke with Darrell Butler, a Captain at the Cave City Police Department. He's been in law enforcement for 34 years now and he told us he believes the whole reason for all the hatred against police officers boils down to one word... Respect.
"I think it's getting to be epidemic proportion, because it seems like there is no respect for police officers anymore. Just like I saw a few weeks ago where a police officer had been shot and killed, they were bringing the person into the jail that killed the officer and they were cheering him on like a standing ovation. That really made me sick at my stomach." Darrell Butler recalls.
Darrell Butler is a second generation police officer. His dad was a police officer and now his son is too.
Darrell says he never lets his guard down and is always aware of his surroundings so he isn't the next victim.