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Dear PoPville – Dead Body in Rock Creek Park

by Prince Of Petworth June 11, 2014 at 10:05 pm 12 Comments

Photo by PoPville flickr user jiconoclast

“Dear PoPville,

Sorry for the depressing subject line, but I’m wondering if you’ve heard anything more about this news story [from the Washington Post]:

“Two people on Friday morning discovered the body of a woman near the William Howard Taft Bridge in Northwest Washington, according to D.C. police.

The cause of death remains undetermined, and Officer Araz Alali, a police department spokesman, said detectives have not yet identified the victim.”

It seems wild that they found a dead body in Woodley Park last week, especially so close to the running trail, but there’s been absolutely no follow-up by the MSM.

My friend and I happened upon the scene when we were running the other morning. It was really disturbing, and made me wonder about trail safety.

Do you know what’s going on?”

Ed. Note: An inquiry with MPD has not (yet) been replied to.

  • Anonymous

    Somebody had apparently jumped from the Taft Bridge above the Cathedral Avenue ramp off Shoreham Drive just a couple of weeks ago. I was driving past just when the ambulance was arriving.

    • Anon

      That’s my understanding as well. And it’s probably why there’s been no followup — no suspect to track down, no threat to the public, etc.

    • runner

      I was running on the bridge in the morning around 5:30am that morning. The police had a small piece of the sidewalk taped off on the south side of the bridge. From the north side, it looked like there was a small step stool right next to the railing. I instantly thought/speculated that someone must have jumped and have been looking for news to confirm that.

    • anon

      I was going to say the same thing. I walked by and saw the body covered in a sheet on the ground. I was told someone jumped. It seems weird there was nothing in the news about it though.

      • anonymous

        I read somewhere that suicides are generally not reported because there is a documented copy-cat effect. Also not sure it is newsworthy, exactly.

    • HiItsNino

      Guitarist John Fahey committed suicide the exact same way. I think that spot is somewhat known for that.

      • Anonymous

        Assuming you’re talking about the one-and-only John Fahey, he died shortly after undergoing coronary bypass surgery. Here’s a quote from his wiki page:
        “In February 2001, six days before what would have been his 62nd birthday, Fahey died at Salem Hospital after undergoing a sextuple coronary bypass operation.”

  • Ward One Resident

    Other than the initial report, they tend not to write about suicides for a variety of reasons. Based on location, I’m sure that’s what this was. This is the second suicide there in the past two months.

  • Pat

    The Centers for Disease Control actually recommend against newspapers reporting on suicides, because of findings that suicide is essentially contagious. You can read their report here:


    • Anonymous

      Unless of course it’s a homicide/suicide as is the case in most of the mass shootings. I wonder if those had not been publicized, would there be less of them.

  • John

    Yes, it is best not to report suicide – the Werther Effect.

  • AMDCer

    Indeed. The same reason we should stop reporting mass shootings.


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