Four active and retired employees of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department have been found dead by suicide in just two days.
As reported by CBS News, the department found the first LASD worker dead at 10:30 a.m. on Monday, November 6 in Lancaster. By 12:50 p.m., detectives received a call about a second death in Lancaster. By 5:40 p.m., a third death was reported in Stevenson Ranch. On the following day at 7:30 a.m., homicide detectives went to a Pamona hospital where the fourth employee was found dead.
"Out of respect for their grieving families we will not be disclosing the names of the employees at this time," said the department in a statement. "Homicide detectives and the County of Los Angeles Medical Examiner will continue to investigate each incident independently." Three of those found dead were current employees, while one was retired. Investigators have not revealed if there is any connection between their deaths.
"Our LASD family has experienced a significant amount of loss and tragedies this year. We are stunned to learn of these deaths, and it has sent shockwaves of emotions throughout the department as we try and cope with the loss of not just one, but four beloved active and retired members of our department family," said Sheriff Robert Luna. "During trying times like these it's important for personnel regardless of rank or position to check on the well-being of other colleagues and friends. I have the deepest concern for our employee's well-being, and we are urgently exploring avenues to reduce work stress factors to support our employees work and personal lives."
The Los Angeles Times reports that one of the employees was commander Darren Harris, who served as a chief department spokesperson during his 25-year career as an officer. Another one of the employees was Sergeant Greg Hovland, who previously worked in the Antelope Valley before retiring. The other two have not been identified.