An African-American New York Judge body was found Wednesday afternoon in the Hudson River and police believe that she may have committed suicide due to recent personal tragedies. Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam, 65, was the first black woman to serve on New York’s highest court.
Abdus-Salaam was an associate justice on the New York Court of Appeals since 2013.
Three years ago, her brother committed suicide around this time of the year. It is believed that that and her work had her under a lot of stress recently. There was no suicide note found.
Judge Sheila Abdus-Salaam
“Obviously, we’re still waiting for the full investigation, but to the extent that the challenges and the stresses in her life contributed to this, it’s a reminder that even the most accomplished people still deal with extraordinary challenges inward, and we don’t get to see that,” New York Mayor Bill de Blasio told reporters Thursday.
According to reports, there was no sign of any criminal activity or body injuries. On Tuesday, Judge Abdus-Salaam called off from work. Around 1:45 p.m. Wednesday, someone reported a person floating in the Hudson River.
Police found her unconscious and unresponsive, she was later pronounced death. She was fully clothed in a running outfit, a black hooded sweatshirt, sweatpants and shoes. Medical examiners are performing an autopsy.