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Third Chicago police officer commits suicide this year


The off-duty officer was discovered near his home on the West Side

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images

A Chicago police officer was found dead over the weekend from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to police. It is the department's third suicide this year.

The body of 44-year-old officer, Eric Concialdi, was found by a fellow police officer Sunday afternoon near his home on the West Side, the Cook County Medical Examiner's told the Chicago Sun-Times.

Concialdi was a 16-year veteran of the force.

"It is with profound sadness that we share the news that a CPD detective took his own life yesterday after going through personal hardships," Chicago Police Department spokesman Anthony Guglielmi tweeted Monday.

An autopsy has been scheduled to officially determine the cause and manner of death, the Sun-Times reported.

Who were the other officers who committed suicide?

On Jan. 1, a 36-year-old officer died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Officer Dane Smith was found at his home on the Northwest Side, according to WLS-TV.

The Fraternal Order of Police called Smith's suicide "devastating" and vowed to "re-double our efforts to work with the department and the city to make sure help is available for officers, and we ask each and every officer to keep an eye out for any officer who may be struggling with depression and guide them to get help," a FOP spokesperson told WCBS-TV earlier this year.

On Feb. 2, Chicago Police Sgt. Lori Rice, 47, committed suicide while sitting in a vehicle with a fellow officer, the Sun-Times reported.

Chicago police officers recently attended a suicide prevention and awareness seminar, according to WCBS. Therapists are also available to officers on an anonymous basis.

What about last year?

Last year, five Chicago police officers committed suicide.

In January, retired CPD officer Ron Rufo told WBBM-TV that the high rate of suicide among officers is a result of long hours, job pressures, and demands of the job.

Rufo, a member of the department's peer support team, said there is a "stigma of being a tough person, being strong, never being the weak link" gets in the way of many officers' asking for help.

"We have over 300 peer support team members but rarely do we get called out as much as we should," Rufo told the station.

"Would you want to work with a partner that is seeking counseling?" he asked during the interview.

What else?

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day for those who need help. The number is 1-800-273-8255 or text the Crisis Text Line by messaging HOME to 741741. Police officers can text BLUE to 741741.

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