Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam: Suicide Or Homicide?
Start writing a post
Politics and Activism

Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam: Suicide Or Homicide?

Her death is sudden and suspicious given her unique circumstances.

38
Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam: Suicide Or Homicide?
Columbia Law School

On Wednesday, April 12th Honorable Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam was found dead in the Hudson River. The police are treating her death as a suicide as there were no apparent signs of trauma. Abdus-Salaam was the first African-American and Muslim woman to serve on the New York Court of Appeals, the state’s highest court.

Per her biography on the State of New York Court of Appeals website, she was born in Washington D.C. in 1952 and received her Juris Doctor from Columbia Law School in 1977. She was elected to the Civil Court of the City of New York in 1991, and the Supreme Court of New York County in 1993 and 2007. She was then appointed as an Associate Justice of the Appellate Division, First Department in March 2009 and to the Court of Appeals by Governor Cuomo and confirmed by the State Senate on May 6th, 2013.

Her death is sudden and suspicious given her unique circumstances, according to the 2014 Annual Report of Vital Statistics in New York State women are 1/6th as likely to commit suicide as men and Black and Hispanics are over half as likely to commit suicide. However, the leading external cause of death in New York state in 2014 among Black people is homicide and legal intervention, that is three times more likely than suicide. Whereas suicide is ten times as likely among White people than homicide. Basically, as a Black woman in New York, she is very unlikely to commit suicide and more at risk to be murdered. Additionally, accidental drowning is at the bottom of the published chart and is approximately twenty times less likely than the leading external causes of death across the board.

Being a triple minority, Judge Abdus-Salaam was exemplary of the shift to a progressive political climate. Her death however markedly is a blow for that movement in light of the regression brought on by the Legislative, Judiciary, and Executive branches of government. Although the thought of a political ‘hit’ à la Martin Luther King is possible, the major media has downplayed the possibility. The coverage which normally would be headline news has since been buried by the news of Trump deploying the MOAB the following day. These world-changing events seem to be occurring exponentially and the public has little time to digest the information and ramifications, losing sight of the significance behind them until long after they occur.

https://www.nycourts.gov/ctapps/jasalaam.htm

https://www.health.ny.gov/statistics/vital_statistics/docs/vital_statistics_annual_report_2014.pdf

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

4 Common Reasons Couples Get Divorced

Are some people just not meant to be together? Is there any way to prevent an impending divorce?

23288
4 Common Reasons Couples Get Divorced

We've all heard the statistics. Roughly 50% of married couples eventually end up divorced. This can lead to complications, problems with your children, financial issues, and no small amount of negative emotions.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

​Pets are Good for the Soul

Millions of Americans have found comfort in pet ownership. The media has been awash with stories about a surge in pet ownership, as Americans have taken advantage of the ability of pets to improve emotional well-being.

38230
Good for the Soul
Pets are Good for the Soul

America is going through a mental health crisis. This crisis predates the global pandemic, but has in many ways been dramatically exacerbated by it. In 2019, 19.86% of adults, or 50 million Americans, reported suffering from a mental illness. The emotional toll of the pandemic has been heavy, with over half of U.S. adults saying that they have experienced stress and worry related to Covid-19. Anxieties over work, uncertainty about the future and other triggers have intensified the mental health crisis. Millions of Americans have found comfort in pet ownership. The media has been awash with stories about a surge in pet ownership, as Americans have taken advantage of the ability of pets to improve emotional well-being.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

How Your Sleep Position Affects Your Health?

You changed into your pajamas, turn off the lights, and get yourself ready to sleep. How do you prefer to sleep, on the back, on your side, or on your tummy? Although there’s no scientific result that sleeping position affects your back, here are some interesting facts that have been discovered.

157476
Sleep Position

You changed into your pajamas, turn off the lights, and get yourself ready to sleep. How do you prefer to sleep, on the back, on your side, or on your tummy? Although there’s no scientific result that sleeping position affects your back, here are some interesting facts that have been discovered.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

How to Throw the Ultimate Winter Bash

As the year starts to come to an end, make sure you find the time to have some fun as well.

111750
Ultimate Winter Bash

As the year starts to come to an end, make sure you find the time to have some fun as well.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Prose: When The Gavel Falls (Story Excerpt)

Johnathan Yarrow is a successful defense attorney, until he takes on a personal case he cannot win. Ruined by the loss and haunted by his past, Yarrow, a man who desired to see the good in all people, starts to learn that not everyone can be good... not even himself.

106203
Prose: When The Gavel Falls (Story Excerpt)
https://unsplash.com/s/photos/lawyer

I woke up, like any other night, in a bed full of nightmares, drenched in sweat that stuck coldly to my skin, as a reminder of the dreams I couldn’t escape. The dream was so vivid, I felt it physically burn on my cheek. I wondered if the sting from the slap was worse simply because her eyes held no remorse, not an ounce of respect.

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments