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The police suicide problem

Being a cop is a dangerous job -- and not just for the obvious reasons. Suicide kills more officers every year than homicides or accidents at work. But what does society owe the families of those for whom this high-stress job is too much to take? One widow answers: respect.

The whole family Trooper Paul McCarthy with his wife, Janice, and their children. In police culture, says trooper-turned-academic John Violanti, suicide is considered a 'coward's way out,' and line-of-duty benefits are only for 'heroic' deaths. The whole family Trooper Paul McCarthy with his wife, Janice, and their children. In police culture, says trooper-turned-academic John Violanti, suicide is considered a "coward's way out," and line-of-duty benefits are only for "heroic" deaths. (Photograph from the McCarthy family)
By Julia Dahl
January 24, 2010

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Being a cop is a dangerous job -- and not just for the obvious reasons. Suicide kills more officers every year than homicides or accidents at work. But what does society owe the families of those for whom this high-stress job is too much to take? One widow answers: respect. (Full article: 3159 words)

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