Police Suicide: Is Police Culture Killing Our Officers?, 1st Edition (Paperback) book cover

Police Suicide

Is Police Culture Killing Our Officers?, 1st Edition

Edited by Ronald A. Rufo

CRC Press

282 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

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pub: 2015-08-20
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There is no question that more police officers die from suicide than those killed in the line of duty. The suicide and attempted suicide of police officers is a mental health concern that has been neglected for far too long.

Police Suicide: Is Police Culture Killing Our Officers? provides realistic insight into the life of a police officer through a police officer’s eyes. Presenting invaluable lessons learned by a Chicago police officer with more than 20 years of experience, it supplies detailed accounts of what an officer goes through to survive on the streets, as well what he or she gives up in return.

A must-read for every new recruit and anyone currently working in law enforcement, this book addresses the critical issues involved with an occupation in policing. Providing comprehensive coverage of the subject, it includes coverage of police culture, stress and burnout, personal issues, emotional survival, suicide prevention, risk factors, and PTSD. The book is practical enough for line officers and has enough theory for an academic course on police stress and suicide.

We need to do a better job of preparing police for this stress and a better job caring for our officers throughout their careers. If we do so, we will have better police officers and we will be better served as a society. This book is a primer in that direction.

From problems on the street and administrative struggles to personal and family matters, this book provides readers with proven methods for coping with the emotional and physical issues police officers face each day while on the street and at home.


"… the greater enemy that our officers struggle with each day is not the suspect on the street but instead the enemy that lives with each officer attempting to effectively address their emotional trauma that impacts their daily lives! Dr. Rufo provides the psychological and departmental roadmap in helping leadership as well as the officers to navigate through the maze of emotional and physical issues they will face each day while on the street as well as at home."

—From the Book’s Foreword, Robert E. Douglas, Jr.

"Sadly, in the 25 weeks of training in the police academy, there is no attention paid to the coping mechanisms needed to handle the large amount of stress and negativity that the police officer faces on the job each day. … This is where Rufo’s book becomes invaluable as a tool for police officers because it supplants what prevention they are getting elsewhere. For that reason, this book is a must-read for every officer, administrator, and chief everywhere to cope with the complexities of modern police work. … I can’t think of a better authority to author such an important book as Dr. Ronald Rufo CPD."

From the Book’s Foreword, Dr. John Mayer, PhD

Table of Contents

Welcome to the Police Academy

Police and the Three Arenas of Social Interaction; Kent Williams

Tell Me That I Am Wrong: Who We Are versus Who We Ought to Be; Thomas Cline

Police Stress and Burnout

Trauma, Critical Incidents, Risk Factors, Acute Stress, and PTSD

Nine Personal Issues That Can Be Detrimental to an Officer

Emotional Health and Concerns: A Cry for Help Is the First Indication That There Is a Problem

Suicide Is Never a Dry Run; Bobby Smith

Police Suicide

Law Enforcement Suicide Prevention; John Marx


About the Editor

Dr. Ron Rufo is a highly decorated Chicago police officer with over 20 years of service, which includes a Life Saving Award, Department Accommodation, and Unit Meritorious Award. He has 23 honorable mentions and over 100 letters of appreciation as a Chicago police officer. Dr. Rufo began his career in the 9th District, was assigned to the prestigious Ambassador program, and was eventually assigned to the Preventive Programs Unit where he has served as a crime prevention speaker for over 13 years.

For most of his career, Dr. Rufo has been actively involved as a peer support team leader for the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) section of the Chicago Police Department. He has had specialized training in suicide prevention and is a member of the Critical Incident Team. Ron has been on numerous calls responding to police officers in crisis and has been involved in the aftermath of police suicides. He is currently assigned to the 18th Police District.

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
COMPUTERS / Security / General
LAW / Criminal Law / General
LAW / Forensic Science