Third Officer Who Responded to Jan. 6 Capitol Riot Dies by Suicide

A third Washington, D.C. police officer who responded to the Jan. 6 Capitol riot has died by suicide, the police department said on Aug. 2.

Officer Gunther Hashida, an 18-year veteran on the force, was found dead at his home last July 29, the Metropolitan Police Department said in a statement.

Hashida’s death marks the third suicide of a police officer who was sent to respond to the violent mob of former President Donald Trump’s supporters, who stormed the Capitol in an attempt to prevent the Nov. 2020 election from being certified.

Hashida’s death also came a week after four officers, who witnessed the Jan. 6 riot firsthand, testified to a House Select Committee.

“We are grieving as a Department as our thoughts and prayers are with Officer Hashida’s family and friends,” the department further said.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi described Hashida as “a hero, who risked his life to save our Capitol, the Congressional community and our very Democracy.”

“All Americans are indebted to him for his great valor and patriotism on January 6th and throughout his selfless service. May his life be an inspiration to all to protect our country and democracy,” Pelosi further said on Twitter.

According to the police department, Hashida, 44, first joined the force in May 2003 and was assigned to the Emergency Response Team within the Special Operations Division.

The two other officers who responded to the Capitol riot and died days later by suicide were Officer Jeffrey Smith, a 12-year veteran, and Officer Howard Liebengood, a 16-year veteran.

Another officer, Brian Sicknick, who suffered a stroke a day after defending the Capitol from the mob, died of natural causes, according to a medical examiner.

The Capitol riot injured over 100 police officers.


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