Widow of a DC police officer who died by suicide after the Capitol riot says 'if it wasn't for January 6, he would still be here'

Trump supporters clash with security forces and police as they storm Washington's Capitol on January 6, 2021. Olivier Douliery/AFP via Getty
Erin Smith claims her husband would still live if it weren't for the January 6 Capitol Riot.

Jeffrey Smith, a DC officer of police, was shot to death nine days after he had been involved in the riot.

Erin Smith claims that video from the riot shows her husband getting hit in the head by a pole of metal.

Jeffrey Smith's widow, a DC Metropolitan Police Officer who committed suicide following the Capitol Riot, stated that her husband would still live if he hadn't experienced it on January 6.

In an interview scheduled to air Sunday, Erin Smith stated that Jeffrey Smith, a 12-year-old veteran officer, had changed his mind after the "traumatic circumstances" at Capitol.

"He got more distant. He got angry. He was extremely short-tempered. According to Erin Smith's transcript, which was shared with Insider, he wasn't himself."

Leigh Ann Caldwell, NBC News' Leigh Ann, said that Jeffrey Smith's behavior was "very unusual". She described Jeffrey Smith as a fun guy who "was always dancing around, making jokes, and kind of an uplifting individual that would keep people smiling and laughing."

Erin Smith stated, "If it weren't January 6, he wouldn't still be here."

Jeffrey Smith, 35, died nine days after he worked the Capitol riot. He was struck in the head with a pole during the riot, his wife said.

According to Erin Smith, the video from the day showed Jeffrey Smith unconscious and on the ground.

The day after being ordered to return to work, he shot himself and drove on the George Washington Memorial Parkway.

In an opinion piece for USA Today, Erin Smith stated that doctors, including the ex-chief medical examiner of DC, had told her that the January 6 events directly led to her husband's suicide.

She called for his death be considered in-the-line of duty, and she said that this would include proper recognition of his service and benefits for his loved ones.

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She wrote, "These officers must be recognized for all the horrors that they have seen and protected from us from." Their families should be given the same support as any other family of fallen officers. Instead, we were stigmatized and had our insurance taken away, which denied us the privilege of an official funeral.

Four police officers who had defended the Capitol in January 2006 later committed suicide.

The complete interview with Erin Smith will air on Sunday, December 2nd at 6:30 PM ET.

Business Insider has the original article.