Capitol police officer dead by suicide after responding to Capitol riot

A 15-year veteran of the U.S. Capitol Police has taken his life after responding to Wednesday's deadly riot in the halls of Congress.

Howard Liebengood was 51 years old.

It's the second life lost in four days for Capitol Police following the death of Officer Brian Sicknick, who suffered injuries during the Capitol riot.

Four other people, including an unarmed Trump supporter, died after Wednesday's storming of the Capitol during a congressional hearing certifying Joe Biden's election victory.

Sources say Liebengood was off-duty when he died Saturday.

Sophia Ayoud, 8, gets fingerprinted by Capitol Police Officer Howard Liebengood as brother Gabriel, 8, and Amina, 8, wait their turns during "Kid Safety Day," held in Dirksen, April 24, 2008. The triplets are children of Laura Ayoud of the Senate Leg

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"Every Capitol Police Officer puts the security of others before their own safety and Officer Liebengood was an example of the selfless service that is the hallmark of USCP," Capitol Police Union Chairman Gus Papathanasiou said in a statement. "This is a tragic day."

Liebengood joined the force in 2005 and was assigned to the Senate division.

He is the son of former Senate Sergeant-At-Arms Howard S. Liebengood.

Liebengood's death adds to the turmoil among law enforcement at the Capitol following Wednesday's riot.

U.S. Capitol Police Chief Steven Sund resigned on Friday, earlier than expected, following criticism of his handling of the crowds that stormed the Capitol.

READ MORE: How were U.S. Capitol Police overrun by pro-Trump rioters?

Paul Irving and Michael Stenger, the respective House and Senate sergeant-at-arms, are stepping down as well.

Federal authorities are now bracing for another wave of right-wing demonstrations opposed to Joe Biden's inauguration on Jan. 20. 

If you or a loved one is feeling distressed, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. The crisis center provides free and confidential emotional support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to civilians and veterans. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 (tel:18002738255). Or text HOME to 741-741 (Crisis Text Line)