A fourth police officer involved in responding to the Capitol riots has died by suicide, the Metropolitan Police Department has confirmed.
Officer Kyle DeFreytag, 26, had joined the force in 2016, and was among the members of DC police deployed to respond to the attack that took place almost seven months ago.
In a statement to fellow officers, the DC police chief wrote:
I am writing to share tragic news that Officer Kyle DeFreytag of the 5th District was found deceased last evening. This is incredibly hard news for us all, and for those that knew him best.
The force confirmed DeFreytag had been working a late shift, and was sent to the Capitol to enforce curfew violations following the riots.
DeFreytag’s death is the fourth suicide involving officers who responded to the deadly riots on January 6, and the third by a member of DC police specifically.
His death was announced on the same day as it was confirmed that fellow officer Gunther Hashida, 43, had also died by suicide, with 12-year force veteran Jeffrey Smith and Capitol Police officer Howard Liebengood also having died in the months following the attacks.
In a recent Senate report into the attacks, Smith and Liebengood were included in the list of those who ‘ultimately lost their lives’ following the events of January 6.
An online fundraising campaign has been established on the behalf of Hashida’s family. He is survived by his wife and three children, The Guardian reports.
The announcement of the officers’ deaths comes a week after members of the force testified to a House select committee about the events of January 6. During the hearing, Capitol Police Officer Harry Dunn urged those involved to seek professional help if they need it. ‘What we all went through that day was traumatic, and if you are hurting, please take advantage of the counselling services that are available to us,’ Dunn said, per CNN.
Former president Donald Trump was impeached for an historic second time following the attack on the Capitol, charged with inciting the insurrection. The Senate acquitted him in February.
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