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NYPD officer found dead in possible fifth suicide since June

A New York Police Department officer was found dead Saturday in a possible suicide on Staten Island, police said. The officer's death marks the fifth apparent suicide of a member of the NYPD since June, including a respected chief and an experienced detective. 

The NYPD Sergeants Benevolent Association tweeted that a sergeant had committed suicide today. A spokesperson for the organization identified the sergeant as a single man.

The NYPD Office of the Deputy Commissioner, Public Information released a statement encouraging officers to seek help if they're struggling:

"The tragic news today that another member of the NYPD has been lost to suicide breaks our hearts, and is a deep sorrow felt by all of New York City.  To every member of the NYPD, please know this: it is okay to feel vulnerable. It is okay if you are facing struggles. And it is okay to seek help from others. You may not know this, and it may be hard to imagine, but you are not out there all by yourself. More people than you know, who wear the same uniform as you do, share the same doubts and fears and struggles that you do. Seeking help is strength. Talking about your problems is strength. Acknowledging you need a place to turn is strength. There is no shame here — only a promise to provide you with the help and support you need and deserve."

The deaths are part of a disturbing trend nationwide. In 2018, at least 167 officers died by suicide — 9 percent more than the number who died in the line of duty, according to Massachusetts nonprofit Blue Help.

According to one study, cops are 30 percent more likely to kill themselves than the general public. 

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