Newly promoted Chicago police chief dies by suicide in department facility

Chicago police chief Dion Boyd was found dead Tuesday morning of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound

A newly promoted, top-ranking Chicago officer has reportedly died by suicide while at a police facility that was recently targeted by anti-racism protests in the city.

According to the Chicago Sun Times, Tuesday afternoon, Supt. David Brown confirmed that Deputy Chief of Criminal Networks Dion Boyd was found dead Tuesday morning of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. His death comes less than two weeks after he was promoted to head the department’s drug crime unit.

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While speaking to the press at Chicago Police Department headquarters, Brown shared that the police deputy chief was “a respected command staff member,” who had been with the department for nearly 30 years.

“There’s really no way to convey or express the magnitude of this loss,” Brown confessed while remembering the 57-year-old who was discovered in the Homan Square police facility.

“We are shocked and saddened at the loss that is deeply felt by me and the many colleagues and friends with whom Deputy Chief Boyd worked and mentored throughout his career.”

While Chicago PD stopped short of linking Boyd’s suicide to the ongoing protests over police brutality taking place in Chicago and all over the nation, he did note that, “The job of a Chicago police officer is not easy, particularly in a time where there is intensified stress.”

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“Everyday life can seem insurmountable at times for anyone, but for police officers the stakes are even higher due to the tireless work that they do to safeguard others,” he said.

He also implored any officers buckling under the weight of their responsibilities to “always remember to take care of ourselves and each other.”

“There is no shame in reaching out for help,” he added. “Please, officers, please, stay humble, stay human, stay safe and stay well.”

As the Sun Times notes, “Suicides have been a continuing problem for the Chicago Police Department for years. In 2017, the U.S. Justice Department reported that the city’s suicide rate among officers was 60% higher than the average of 18.1 officers per 100,000 nationally. The report recommended improvements in mental-health counseling available to officers.”

Mayor Lori Lightfoot also publicly offered her condolences Tuesday afternoon.

“To every officer, we want you to know that you are deserving of help and healing, and no one needs to struggle alone,” Lightfoot tweeted.

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