Suicide among New York City police officers, 1977-1996

Am J Psychiatry. 2002 Dec;159(12):2069-71. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.159.12.2069.


Objective: The authors assessed the suicide rates of New York City police officers during a recent period.

Method: The authors reviewed death certificates of active New York City police officers who died from 1977 through 1996 (N=668); age-, gender-, and race-specific suicide rates among New York City police officers and the city's residents were determined.

Results: The police suicide rate was 14.9 per 100,000 person-years, compared with a demographically adjusted suicide rate of New York City residents of 18.3 per 100,000 person-years. Suicide rates among male police officers were comparable to their reference population. Female police officers had a higher risk of suicide than female residents of New York, but the number of suicides of female police officers was small.

Conclusions: The rate of suicide among New York City police officers is equal to, or even lower than, the suicide rate of the city's resident population.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • New York City / epidemiology
  • Police / statistics & numerical data*
  • Suicide / statistics & numerical data*
  • United States / epidemiology