ST. CLOUD -- Police officers are facing increased scrutiny over a rash of deadly shootings in recent years, but a national expert on the issue says the facts don't support the narrative.

Jason Riley -- Photo by Lee Voss, WJON

Jason Riley is a Senior Fellow at the Manhattan Institute and a journalist at the Wall Street Journal. He spoke at the annual Minnesota Chiefs of Police convention in St. Cloud.

Riley says activist groups and the media are misleading the public that there is an increase in the use of deadly force by officers. Riley says statistics show police-involved shootings have been declining for decades...

I think you have a lot of anecdotal situations out there that social media has made to look as if they are trends.  But, I don't think the data really backs that up at all.  In fact, it shows that police are actually using their weapons less often than they did 10, 20, 30 years ago.

Groups like Black Lives Matter have made claims against police which has fanned the flames of divide between the community and law enforcement.  Riley says activists claiming a "war on cops" commonly speak for themselves and not for the community they claim to be representing. The real problem, he says, is the "war on truth".

I think they're being scapegoated for a lot of other institutions that are failing young people today.  Everything from a break down in our families to shoddy school systems and so forth.  They're being asked to be social workers and do a lot of things that's really outside of their purview.

Riley is a black man who grew up in an inner-city. He says police aren't racially profiling young black men because of the color of their skin, but rather because they commit more than half of all the murders in the U.S.  Riley says that's profiling based on behavioral statistics, not because of racism.