suicide

In Missouri, two political suicides have stunned the Republican Party. In February, state Auditor Tom Schweich, a leading candidate for the party's nomination for governor, shot himself. Then just last month, his press secretary, Spence Jackson, took his own life. The tragedies have sparked fresh scrutiny of Missouri's increasingly bruising political system.

Schweich launched his campaign for governor with a scathing broadside against the state's Republican Party establishment.

Spence Jackson / Linkedin

  Investigators have found a note Missouri auditor’s office spokesman Robert “Spence” Jackson wrote before his apparent suicide.

Jefferson City Police Captain Doug Shoemaker announced the finding Monday, but wouldn’t reveal what it said.

(Updated 4:20 p.m. Friday, March 20)

Retired U.S. Sen. John C. Danforth says he’s not giving up in his quest to force the ouster of Missouri GOP chairman, John Hancock, whom Danforth blames for an alleged anti-Semitic “whispering campaign’’ that Danforth believes prompted state Auditor Tom Schweich to kill himself.

“I think (Hancock) should be repudiated by all Republicans,’’ Danforth said in a telephone interview late Thursday.  The retired senator added that he was not calling for Hancock’s resignation, and instead wanted Hancock to be forced out.

People who struggle with suicidal thoughts will often reach out to friends and family first. But when our social circle lives online these days, the biggest social media networks grapple with how to intervene and with getting users the right kind of help.

Facebook is the latest social media network to roll out support resources for suicide prevention. The company is now trying to combat suicide by doing what it does best — connecting friends.

For different reasons, both Missouri Republicans and Democrats have found themselves engaged in some introspection -- even soul-searching -- as they struggle to assess and reconsider their words, actions and policies in the face of some direct challenges from within.

State of Missouri

An aide to former U.S. Senator John Danforth says she was on the phone with Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich discussing his religion just moments before he killed himself. 

Missouri Auditor Tom Schweich came across as a relatively mild-mannered politician, but when he formally declared his candidacy for governor last month, he came out swinging.

http://martinmanleylifeanddeath.com/

Updated at 11:59 am with information from Overland Park PD, Overland Park City Hall

Martin Manley, 60, reportedly committed suicide in front of a police station just south of Kansas City, Kansas yesterday morning. The Overland Park police department did confirm that a suicide happened "Thursday morning" in the "vicinity" of the police department.  But they would not confirm if the suicide was Martin Manley or not.

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Pink Sherbert Photography / Flickr

This week on the show: the University of Missouri sponsors the Suicide Prevention Week. Plus: Missouri is ill-equipped to deal with prescription drug abuse.