Trump referenced the recent murders of on-duty police officers in Dallas and Louisiana, then promised the crowd: "It's going to stop, okay? It's going to stop. We're going to be law and order. It's going to stop."
Last year 123 police officers were killed in the line of duty, according to the Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. Recent years have seen far fewer deaths than in the 1970s, when more than 200 officers were killed several years in a row. In the first six months of this year, 20 officers were fatally shot in the line of duty, compared with 16 in the first six months of 2015, according to the Officer Down Memorial Page. The Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund has reported seeing the same dramatic increase.
Trump acknowledged that some police officers might also need to make some changes. An ongoing two-year study by The Washington Post found that the number of fatal shootings by officers increased from 465 in the first six months of last year to 491 for the same period this year.
"And the police are going to be careful. They're going to be careful," Trump said. "We don't want to have problems. We don't want to do something wrong -- whether it's a mistake or you have somebody that has a really deep-seated hatred, which happens, which happens. You know the biggest problem that we have is the police will do a 100,000 unbelievable things. Nobody talks about it. If there's one mistake, whether it's intended or not intended, one mistake, that mistake is broadcast on the newscasts for weeks. For weeks. And we can't make those mistakes. We can't make those mistakes. And we're not going to make those mistakes."
Earlier in the night, before Trump took the stage, televangelist Mark Burns fired up the crowd and defended Trump against accusations of racism. Burns, who is African American, then led the crowd in this chant: "All lives matter! All lives matter! All lives matter!"