A Template for the Investigation of Suicidal Behavior and Subject Precipitated Homicide

  • Thomas Streed, PhD
Keywords: Psychological Autopsy, Self-destruction, Suicide, Suicide-by-cop, Police Shootings, Death Investigation.


            Suicide is the 11th leading cause of death among all Americans, the second leading cause of death among Americans ages 25-34, and the third leading cause of death among Americans ages 15 to 24.  

            Over the past 30 years, researchers have created a number of mnemonics to aid in the identification and quick assessment of pre-suicidal individuals, however, these mnemonics have been limited in terms of their scope.  While the 65-point mnemonic template, “S-U-I-CI-D-A-L,” developed by Forensic Consultation International (FCI) also describes criteria that aid in the recognition of an individual who is at risk of committing suicide, it further provides a template to aid in the determination of whether the mode of an undetermined death is consistent with a natural death, an accidental death, a suicide, a homicide, or must remain as undetermined. Additionally, the “S-U-I-CI-D-A-L” mnemonic provides a template for the investigation of Subject Precipitated Homicide (suicide-by-cop).   


Keywords:  Psychological Autopsy; Self-destruction; Suicide; Suicide-by-cop; Police Shootings; Death Investigation.   

Investigative Articles