The repported suicide of a fourth police officer who worked the January 6 riots has sparked concern among those who have questioned the narrative and circumstances surrounding event.
Let me state up front that it is not my intention to make wild accusations or cause the families of the deceased officers any further pain. But the statistical anomalies are striking. Moreover, evidence has been flowing in for months that indicates a strong likelihood the law enforcement responses were orchestrated on that day in a way that not only allowed but may have encouraged the Capitol breach.
Was there a conspiracy that engulfed these four officers and others? Could these officers have been “suicided” to keep the truth from coming to light? Are other officers being silenced through threats or other means? Or was this all just one long series of coincidences?
Statistically speaking, the chances of it all being random seems very far fetched. I’ll go over the numbers that make these questions worth exploring, numbers that nobody is talking about until now.
First, let’s get the facts. Here’s an article by Mimi Nguyen Ly from our partners at The Epoch Times:
4th Police Officer Who Was at Jan. 6 Capitol Breach Dies by Suicide
A fourth police officer who was present at the grounds of the Capitol building when it was breached on Jan. 6 has died by suicide, according to the Metropolitan Police Department of the District of Columbia (MPD).
Metropolitan Police Officer Kyle DeFreytag, 26, was found dead on July 10 from suicide, an MPD spokeswoman told The Epoch Times via email.
DeFreytag was assigned to the Fifth District and had been with the police department since November 2016. MPD Chief Robert J. Contee III had sent a message to the police force last month to notify them of DeFreytag’s death.
“I am writing to share tragic news that Officer Kyle DeFreytag of the 5th District was found deceased last evening,” Contee told the department in July, according to WUSA. “This is incredibly hard news for us all, and for those that knew him best.”
DeFreytag lived in Alexandria, Virginia, and was originally from Pennsylvania, according to an obituary posted by the Bensing-Thomas Funeral Home. A memorial service was held in his memory on July 31.
“He liked hiking, camping, riding his motorcycle, he liked traveling and playing the drums, he enjoyed trying different ethnic foods and always knew the best places to eat. Kyle was kind, he had a quick wit and a great sense of humor and kept us laughing for 26 years,” according to the obituary.
DeFreytag is survived by his parents, his brother, and his sister. The confirmation from the MPD of DeFreytag’s suicide came just hours after 43-year-old Gunther Hashida was confirmed to have died by suicide.
According to a GoFundMe fundraising page, Hashida is survived by his wife and three children. The page didn’t specify the cause of his death or what may have driven him to end his life.
DeFreytag’s death brings the number of police officers who were present at the Capitol on Jan. 6 who reportedly died by suicide to four. The other two cases said to be due to suicide are that of MPD Officer Jeffrey Smith and Capitol Police Officer Howard Liebengood.
Lawmakers gathered at the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6 for a joint session of Congress to count and certify electoral votes for the 2020 presidential election. Proceedings in the chambers were temporarily interrupted when a sizable group of protesters entered the Capitol building. Thousands of protesters, mostly peaceful, remained outside.
It remains unclear who or what groups may have instigated the breach of the Capitol building. A total of five deaths were recorded in the immediate aftermath of the Jan. 6 incident.
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Of the deaths, Trump supporter Ashli Babbitt was determined to have died from homicide on Jan. 6, having been shot and killed by an unnamed officer.
Another three people died on Jan. 6 outside the Capitol building but on Capitol grounds. Two of the deaths were found to be from natural causes—both were men in their 50s who died of hypertensive atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease. The remaining death, involving a woman in her 30s, was ruled as an accident from a drug overdose.
Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick was determined to have died of natural causes on Jan. 7.
More than 100 police officers were reportedly injured in the aftermath of the Jan. 6 incident. The events of the day culminated in a second impeachment trial for then-President Donald Trump, who was ultimately acquitted of an insurrection incitement charge in February.
More than 500 people have been arrested and charged in cases related to the events on Jan. 6 at the Capitol. Among them, more than 50 are being held pretrial in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day, in conditions that are “unconstitutional” and violate “every single basic human right,” lawyers representing several of the defendants told EpochTV last month.
Four police officers on July 27 recounted to a House of Representatives special committee that they were beaten and threatened amid clashes with the protesters on Jan. 6.
Zachary Stieber contributed to this report.
Following news of the fourth suicide, debate ramped up over why this is happening and whether a conspiracy is afoot. Naysayers clung to anecdotal “facts” such as “cops are far more likely to commit suicide than everyone else.” They also invoked Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder as a likely cause of the suicides of “guilt-ridden cops who were trying to defend Democracy.” On social media, everyone thinks they’re a qualified psychologist.
Unfortunately, arguments from the side that believes something fishy is in play were not much better. I combed through six articles on right-leaning and/or conspiracy theory sites looking for data to back up claims of foul play and only Stephen Green at PJ Media made an effort to back speculation with hard numbers. He also brought up the most important and inconvenient question of all: If there’s a conspiracy, who could we trust to investigate it?
The MPD has 3,800 officers, meaning that the force has had a suicide rate of just over 4 per 1,000 in just the last few months. In 2019, the national suicide rate was about 0.14 per 1,000.
Even with 2020’s higher suicide rate (we couldn’t find final figures in time for today’s column), an MPD officer is about 25 times more likely to die by their own hand than a typical American.
The ratio skews even more towards the extreme when you consider that not nearly every one of the MPD’s 3,800 officers responded to the riot.
But who’s going to investigate? The same MPD that’s taken such poor care of its own officers? The FBI that may have enticed and entrapped protestors into becoming rioters?
I don’t have an answer to the last question, but I was able to put together some numbers. We know that at least four MPD/CPD who were present at the Capitol on January 6th have died and their deaths have been ruled as suicides. We know that around 500 MPD/CPD officers were present at the incident, according to TMZ. So, approximately 0.8% of the officers involved with the riots have died by suicide, an absolutely astounding number.
How does this compare to law enforcement suicides in general? There are approximately 800,000 law enforcement officers in the United States, according to the National Law Enforcement Officers Memorial Fund. Suicides among law enforcement officers had been trending up with a peak in 2019. But 2020 showed a decline and 2021 is on pace to be slightly lower than last year.
According to Blue Help, there have been 87 law enforcement officer suicides this year. That means a mind-blowing 4.6% of law enforcement suicides have been MPD/CPD officers present at the Capitol on January 6. There have been 83 suicides among 800,000 officers across the country but we’re supposed to not question when 4 out of 500 MPD/CPD officers are ruled as suicides? Considering there were many questions being asked about the events on January 6th before the last two suicides were reported, this has to add fuel to the fire.
To put it into perspective, the 2021 statistics tell us that 0.01% of of all police officers have committed suicide but 0.8% of law enforcement officers at the Capitol on January 6 have died with their deaths ruled as suicide. That means that those present at the Capitol on January 6th are over 73 times more likely to die by suicide than other law enforcement officers.
That’s by far the highest concentration of suicides. It’s higher than in Chicago where law enforcement officers endure daily verbal and often physical abuse. It’s higher than Los Angeles with gang violence that sends many law enforcement officers into clinical depression. It’s even higher than Minneapolis, Seattle, or Portland where both criminals and law abiding citizens have turned against law enforcement like never before.
We’re supposed to sit back and pretend like all of this sounds normal. They say we’re conspiracy theorists if we ask questions about statistically improbable scenarios like four Capitol officer suicides. Based on these numbers, I’m okay with that label.