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Another Capitol Police Death: Officer Dies By Suicide After Responding To Pro-Trump Riot

Another Capitol Police Death: Officer Dies By Suicide After Responding To Pro-Trump Riot


A second U.S. Capitol Police officer has died since Wednesday’s storming of Congress by a mob of President Trump’s supporters, authorities reported Sunday. 

Kid Safety Day

Gabriel Ayoud, 8, gets fingerprinted by Capitol Police Officer Howard Liebengood as sisters Sophia, … [+] 8, washes the ink off and Amina, 8, waits her turn during “Kid Safety Day,” held in Dirksen, April 24, 2008.

CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Key Facts

Initially announced as an “off-duty” death by the U.S. Capitol Police on Sunday morning, multiple news outlets, former police chief Terrance Gainer and a police report confirmed that Howard Liebengood, 51, died by suicide on Saturday.

Liebengood, a 15-year veteran of the force, “was among those who responded to the rioting at the U.S. Capitol on January 6,” according to a statement released by the USCP union. 

Gainer described Liebengood’s death as a “line of duty casualty” in an interview with CBS News, saying it was no different than the death of fellow officer Brian Sicknick, who died Thursday night from injuries sustained while protecting the Capitol complex.

Liebengood, who was assigned to the Senate Division, is the son of Howard Liebengood (they share the same name), a former sergeant-at-arms and chief security official of the U.S. Senate. 

Crucial Quote

“This is the second death of a USCP Officer in just two days, with the passing of Officer Brian D. Sicknick on Thursday evening from injuries sustained while on duty during the assault on the Capitol,” said the union. “Their lives and service will not be forgotten.” 

Big Number 

5. That’s how many people died from injuries or medical emergencies experienced during the Capitol unrest on Wednesday. 

Key Background 

U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund, who has faced significant blowback for his handling of the attacks, stepped down from his post Friday, according to The Washington Post, a week earlier than he had previously said he would depart. 

If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) or text the Crisis Text Line at 741-741. 

Further Reading 

“Capitol Police Officer Dead From Riot Injuries, Homicide Investigation Launched” (Forbes)

“Woman Possibly ‘Crushed To Death’: These Are The Five People Who Died Amid Pro-Trump Riots“ (Forbes)

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