Police: Number of suicides rising this year

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Tuesday, August 19, 2014

In Cebu Province, an average of seven people committed suicide every month from January to July this year, according to data from the Cebu Provincial Police Office (CPPO). A total of 52 suicides were reported during the period, of whom 43 were men.

According to the Homicide Section of the Cebu City Police Office (CCPO), most of the suicides were men, aged 22 to 30.

The Homicide Section recorded a total of 26 suicides from January to August. Twenty were men.


Homicide Section investigator Alex Dacua said the figure is higher than the 24 cases recorded for the same period last year.


A total of 38 suicides were recorded for the entire 2013.

Dacua said that most of the suicides were committed last May, with five.

The most common reason cited was depression, followed by drug addiction.

“Usually, depression tungod kay nag-away sa uyab or asawa or tungod nga nasakit (Those who committed suicide were depressed because they fought with a loved one or became ill),” said Dacua.

The most common method is hanging.

Yesterday dawn, a 23-year-old man committed suicide in Barangay Babag, Cebu City by hanging himself inside his room. Junril Jacaban reportedly suffered from a nervous breakdown.


Dacua, who has been with the Homicide Section for 10 years, said that most of those who commit suicide prefer a quick and sure death.

“Slitting one’s wrist and drinking insecticide are very seldom. Most of those I responded to hanged themselves,” he told Sun.Star Cebu.

This year, a woman in Barangay Pardo committed suicide by drinking an insecticide.

The Homicide Section also recorded two suicides where victims jumped off a building.

The latest was last weekend, when a call-center agent leapt from the roof deck of a building at the Asiatown I.T. Park because his girlfriend reportedly broke up with him.

Dacua said the most unique suicide he responded to this year was when a man killed his doctor at the Sacred Heart Hospital last July and then shot himself after.


The Homicide Section was not able to provide a detailed record of last year's suicide incidents. Dacua said they seldom consolidate records of suicides because they focus on crimes.

He said that when police respond to suicide alarms, they check if foul play is involved. If there is no foul play, they consider the case closed.

In Cebu Province, common causes of suicide are failing in love, family problems and nervous breakdown.

Records from Provincial Investigation and Detective Management Branch (PIDMB) reveal that 14 out of 52 involved persons from 31 to 40 years old; 12 were 21 to 30. Eleven of the suicides were 41 to 50; six were senior citizens; and two were 51 to 60.

Only five suicides were committed by persons below 20 years old. This included the 16-year-old girl in Barangay Atabay, Alcoy who ended her life last July because she felt neglected by her parents.

PO2 Girlie Tolop of CPPO's Public Information Office said there is an increase in the number of suicides this year over last year’s 50 cases.

The cases included a 25-year-old man who killed himself last April after arguing with his sister in Barangay Poblacion, Oslob. Three months later, a farmer suffering from depression after having a stroke set himself on fire in Barangay Napo, Carcar City.

Tolop said the police conduct awareness seminars in different communities to
strengthen family ties, which helps prevent suicide, especially among teens.

“Dapat gyud sila storyaan sa ilang mga problema. Dili pasagdan nga mag-inusara (People should talk to them. They should not be left alone),” Tolop told Sun.Star Cebu.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 20, 2014.

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