According to the Economic Observer, in the past two months three local Communist officials have killed themselves, joining a "growing number of high-ranking officials" who have committed suicide.
Published reports in China's state-run media typically attributed the deaths to depression but the public's reaction has been anything but sympathetic. The Observer noted that Internet users have taken to ridiculing the dead in part because the official reaction to these suicides has been so ham-fisted, with vague and elusive statements regarding the cause of death.
In some cases, such statements are clearly untenable. In 2011, Xie Yexin, an anti-corruption official, was found dead in his office with eleven stab wounds. After a "meticulous investigation," the authorities declared that Xie killed himself.