I wonder if anyone can tell me based on their experience or secondhand knowledge, does the police department typically not release a suicide note and retain it as evidence in an investigation?  I did not get the one written by my son returned to me with his personal affects, but I am aware that one was written because it is mentioned in the police report.  I called the evidence dept regarding this, and the person did not have an explanation for me, other than to say that she had verified everything on her check-off sheet.  This is very troubling to me.  I would appreciate it if anyone has information that can shed more light on the situation, as to what is the protocol regarding suicide notes.  Thank you in advance.

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My sister too wrote a note to us the family and one to her ex-bf when she committed suicide. They took the notes and kept them as 'evidence' until they verified it was in fact suicide and no one else was involved ( this is what they told us for a reason ) They seem to do this if you too are experiencing that. So to answer your question they do take it when they come to the 'scene' and they DO and HAVE TO give it back to you. We had ours back after many times calling the office and expressing our grief with not having it. They for some reason like to make it hard, for us anyways. So now we have her last letter to us and you should get yours from your son. Its only right. Best of luck and I am sorry for your loss.
Perhaps it would be helpful to contact the police officer who is directly in charge of the investigation. Often called simply "the officer in charge," the person may or may not be a detective, but every case is assigned to a person who takes responsibility over it. Do you know who was in charge of your son's case? 
Thanks, I'll follow up on that lead.  Appreciate it.
I wish you the best. Please take very good care of yourself as you do the things you need to do, and reach out for help when you need it ... FJC

Theresa, My daughter did not leave a note but my son did 7 years later when he committed suicide in his own bathroom on March 29th, 2008.    He wrote a note to apologize to all of his family for doing what he did but he was in a great deal of pain daily with migraine headaches and when he took the medicine for  headaches, he had stomach trouble, then back and forth, he was miserable most of the time and in a lot of pain.  He attended several clinics and changed doctors many times but he did not get much relief.  They would only give him 9 pills per month and that was not enough for his headaches. 

 

Anyway, he did leave this note and the police took it but returned it to his wife about a week or so later in a sheet protector.  (They may have given her a copy of it instead of the original, but it was his note.)

 

You can ask for all documents regarding the "open records act" and get a copy of each page of the incident report, photos of crime scene, notes of officers, and the complete investigation that is written for that particular incident report.  You can write to the Coroners office for a copy of the autopsy and death reports.  We received a total of about 130 pages from my daughters suicide of 9/1/01.  it has just been 10 years this past week.  I still cry almost daily for them both and I light a candle for them on the 1st day of each month.  I talk about them to anyone who will listen and look at all my pictures often.  I write poetry to them about what is going on around me now.  that helps me a little.  A journal just writing down how I feel help also.  I hand delivered by request for all papers thru the open records act to the city attorney because in our city that's who handles it.  I hope some of this helps you.

Thanks Linda.  This is all really helpful information to me.  I received a scant police report and did not realize that I have the right to all the material.  I'm sorry for your terrible loss, twice over.  You are more than a mere 'survivor' it seems.  You sound strong.  A good role model for me.  I don't intend to stay stuck if I have any say in the matter.  Am trying to embrace all the information and grieving so that I can move through it and get to a better place.  Thanks for your input today.  All the best to you.  Theresa

Linda Warriner said:

Theresa, My daughter did not leave a note but my son did 7 years later when he committed suicide in his own bathroom on March 29th, 2008.    He wrote a note to apologize to all of his family for doing what he did but he was in a great deal of pain daily with migraine headaches and when he took the medicine for  headaches, he had stomach trouble, then back and forth, he was miserable most of the time and in a lot of pain.  He attended several clinics and changed doctors many times but he did not get much relief.  They would only give him 9 pills per month and that was not enough for his headaches. 

 

Anyway, he did leave this note and the police took it but returned it to his wife about a week or so later in a sheet protector.  (They may have given her a copy of it instead of the original, but it was his note.)

 

You can ask for all documents regarding the "open records act" and get a copy of each page of the incident report, photos of crime scene, notes of officers, and the complete investigation that is written for that particular incident report.  You can write to the Coroners office for a copy of the autopsy and death reports.  We received a total of about 130 pages from my daughters suicide of 9/1/01.  it has just been 10 years this past week.  I still cry almost daily for them both and I light a candle for them on the 1st day of each month.  I talk about them to anyone who will listen and look at all my pictures often.  I write poetry to them about what is going on around me now.  that helps me a little.  A journal just writing down how I feel help also.  I hand delivered by request for all papers thru the open records act to the city attorney because in our city that's who handles it.  I hope some of this helps you.



Theresa Sweaney said:
Thanks Linda.  This is all really helpful information to me.  I received a scant police report and did not realize that I have the right to all the material.  I'm sorry for your terrible loss, twice over.  You are more than a mere 'survivor' it seems.  You sound strong.  A good role model for me.  I don't intend to stay stuck if I have any say in the matter.  Am trying to embrace all the information and grieving so that I can move through it and get to a better place.  Thanks for your input today.  All the best to you.  Theresa

Linda Warriner said:

Theresa, My daughter did not leave a note but my son did 7 years later when he committed suicide in his own bathroom on March 29th, 2008.    He wrote a note to apologize to all of his family for doing what he did but he was in a great deal of pain daily with migraine headaches and when he took the medicine for  headaches, he had stomach trouble, then back and forth, he was miserable most of the time and in a lot of pain.  He attended several clinics and changed doctors many times but he did not get much relief.  They would only give him 9 pills per month and that was not enough for his headaches. 

 

Anyway, he did leave this note and the police took it but returned it to his wife about a week or so later in a sheet protector.  (They may have given her a copy of it instead of the original, but it was his note.)

 

You can ask for all documents regarding the "open records act" and get a copy of each page of the incident report, photos of crime scene, notes of officers, and the complete investigation that is written for that particular incident report.  You can write to the Coroners office for a copy of the autopsy and death reports.  We received a total of about 130 pages from my daughters suicide of 9/1/01.  it has just been 10 years this past week.  I still cry almost daily for them both and I light a candle for them on the 1st day of each month.  I talk about them to anyone who will listen and look at all my pictures often.  I write poetry to them about what is going on around me now.  that helps me a little.  A journal just writing down how I feel help also.  I hand delivered by request for all papers thru the open records act to the city attorney because in our city that's who handles it.  I hope some of this helps you.

Theresa,  I left a few things out that you need to know.  We requested all documents regarding the incident and all amendments and investigating reports, notes, etc.  It is called the "Open Records Act"  and in our city, Fort Worth, TX. we sent our letter to the City of Fort Worth

Attention:  Records Department

 

Suject line needs incident report number, name of person and date of occurance.

Ask for a copy of the 911 tape.

All incident reports including any amendments to the notes section.

Autopsy Report

Toxology Report

Photos of crime scene

A list of everyone attending during the incident report, including names and ID #s of officers and public service attendants, if called 911.

In our case we asked for the GSR report also to determine gun shot residue on each person there.

We included both my address and my ex-husbands and asked that we both receive this information and that we woudl gladly pay for the copies, if necessary. The actually cost us $12.10 but they were worth it.  It took some time for us to receive all of these, but we did get all of them eventually.

In my daughter's case, they held the final status open for one year due to Homicide investigating various facts that I gave them in writing.

Her boyfriend was suspicious and had to take two polygraphs.

Gun shot residue was NOT found on either my daughter or on his hands.

Indeterminate, they said.

 

Tyep another letter to the Medical Examiners Office (get his name from the phone book or call and get it) You need his name on the letter requesting copy of autopsy report because he will have to sign the release to you.

 

I did not receive the final letter stating my daughters case was ruled a suicide on 9/4/02, one year and 3 days later.

 

It helped me to type a fact sheet of what I knew about my daughter's last two days of her life, and the facts of ohow i found here apartment, etc.  I sent unanswered questins to the Chief of Police4 of Fort Worth and asked for a  reply on each quedstion.  I did receive most of the answers I expected but I had to keep reminding them they had not satisfied me periodically, about every 6 wks.  It also was helpfun to let a couple of my friends red all the info so they could help me desphifer some of the language, etc.

Just write me if I can help anymore.  I'd love to talk to yu if you ever want to or feel like it.

My E-mail is Lindylululinda@aol.com

My cell is 817-680-0148 in Ft Worth TX

Where do you live?

 

Sincerely, Linda Warriner

 

 

Theresa, I'm sorry for your lost. Yes, the police dept. typically releases the note.  I wasn't aware that my daughter had written one, until the detective on the case informed me. It was comforting to know she had written one saying goodbye to us. This was 16 yrs ago and my daughter was 15yrs old. They found the note when they arrived at our home. I was so out of it when they arrived, I hadn't thought about a note at that time. I was pleased to know one was written, it helped in the healing process.
@Linda, I offer my condolences to you. You stated that a person could request a copy of the 911 tape. I wasn't aware of that. Do you know wheter there's a stature of limitations on that? It's been 16 yrs since my daughter's death. I'm wondering if I could still obtain a copy on the tape?


Wanda Clark said:
@Linda, I offer my condolences to you. You stated that a person could request a copy of the 911 tape. I wasn't aware of that. Do you know wheter there's a stature of limitations on that? It's been 16 yrs since my daughter's death. I'm wondering if I could still obtain a copy on the tape?

Wanda,  i believe it depends on the retention schedule of that particular city and state.  What state are you dealing with? I'm in Texas and I berlieve they only kee tapes, etc for 10 years but I am not positive. You can go on the police website and email them this question.  I'm sure someone can tell you pretty quickly if you have any options at this time.Just be sure if you write ayone for any of the copies that yu tell gthem you will pay for the copies so their reply will not take so long.

 

I wish you luck.

 

I have everything in binders regarding my incidents and I go back and re read everything about every 3 or 4 months just to see if I missed something.

 

I hope you can get a copy fo the tape.  I will research the internet to see if there is ageneral question regarding your answer.  If I find anythign, I will let you know.

Linda Warriner/Fort Worth, TX

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