Have Couch, Will Travel: A blog about psychology and law enforcement

police suicide

September 25, 2013

Tags: police suicide, links to program "Preventing Police Suicide"

Two Oakland officers have killed themselves in less than two months bringing the total of suicides to four in less than five years - the same number as those killed in the line of duty. While there is controversy about the rate of police suicide as compared to the general population, the most poignant statistic is that cops are two to three times as likely to kill themselves as they are to be killed in the line of duty.

Police suicide is at the heart of my first novel, Burying Ben and the subject of chapters in my non-fiction books, Counseling Cops and I Love a Cop . Police work is sometimes called "the impossible profession" where one sin is worth a thousand good deeds. Cops see things most of us will never see and do things most of us could never do.

What can you do? Try smiling at the next officer you see and thanking him or her for their service. Click on the link below to hear three experts talk about preventing police suicides. Brian Cahill, father of an officer who took his own life, Lt. Mary Dunnigan of the SFPD Behavior Science Unit, and Dr. John Violanti, distinguished researcher, professor and author or numerous books on police suicide.

Suicide - it affects us all

September 16, 2013

Tags: suicide, suicide prevention, suicide prevention campaign

Thanks to the 7855 readers who downloaded a free Kindle version of Burying Ben during our 5 day campaign. Each download represents a donation to the American Association of Suicidology. Suicide affects us all, sometimes for generations to come. It ranks 10th as a cause of adult death in the U.S. and 3rd for young people. Homicide ranks 16th. Police suicide, which is the theme of Burying Ben, out ranks line-of-duty deaths by two to one. Some estimates place it even higher. Visit www.suicidology.org or www.badgeoflife.org to learn more about the scope of the problem, what you can do to help and how to recognize the signs and symptoms of someone who might be contemplating suicide.

National Suicide Prevention Week

September 3, 2013

Tags: suicide prevention, police suicide

Good News: BURYING BEN, my new mystery, will be available as a free Kindle download during National Suicide Prevention Week. If you donít own a Kindle, you can download the free Kindle reader to your laptop or tablet. For every free download my publisher, Aakenbaaken & Kent, will make a donation to the American Association of Suicidology. The more downloads, the larger the donation. The free download period begins next Saturday, September 7 and ends Wednesday, September 11.