BJS: Bureau of Justice Statistics

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Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS)
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When are suicides included in the ARD program?

The term suicide is used to describe the intentional killing of oneself. A suicide is considered arrest-related if the deceased interacted with state or local law enforcement officers immediately prior to taking his or her life. The most common type of reported arrest-related suicide involved decedents engaged in an armed standoffs with law enforcement personnel. Other arrest-related suicides include instances when law enforcement personnel were attempting to apprehend criminal suspects who committed suicide in order to avoid being taken into physical custody.

Deaths attributed to suicide by cop were not considered to be arrest-related suicides. These deaths were included in the ARD collection, but recorded as homicides by law enforcement personnel because the death was the result of actions taken by another human being.

Suicides of persons sought by law enforcement (i.e., those with warrants for their arrest) were excluded from the ARD collection if the suicide occurred before the decedent was located by police.

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