Police personnel have been urged to inquire about their coworkers’ well-being after three current as well as a former LA Sheriff’s Department employee committed suicide in the span of a single day.
On Monday morning at 10:30 a.m., veteran commander Darren Harris was discovered deceased in his Santa Clarita residence.
LASD detectives reported two more deaths in Lancaster, one at 12:53 p.m. and a third at 5:40 p.m., just over two hours later. at Stevenson Ranch. Around seven thirty on Tuesday morning, the fourth victim was found. in Pomona City.
Cmdr. Darren Harris, a 25-year veteran of the force, was one of the victims. He was discovered dead on Monday morning from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Retired Sgt. Greg Hovland was another victim, found a few hours later.
According to the department’s release, the County of Los Angeles Medical Examiner and homicide detectives are looking into the four deaths.
Law Enforcement Vulnerable to Employee Suicide Deaths
Research has indicated that law enforcement teams with a smaller workforce are more vulnerable to employee suicide deaths.
A 2022 study discovered that law enforcement officers have a 54% higher suicide risk than the general population.
This finding has been attributed by some to the superiority of peer support and mental health services found in larger teams.
Sheriff Luna stated in her statement on Tuesday that the Psychological Services Bureau and the Injury and Health Support Unit of the Department were attempting to offer counseling and other resources to the officers’ families.
The tragedy has raised awareness of the high suicide rates among those in positions of authority.
According to a representative for the department, four more LA Sheriff’s Department staff members have committed suicide just this year.
According to NBC, all four incidents are being investigated as suicides, but the causes of death have not been determined by the Los Angeles County medical examiner’s office.