Thursday, June 30, 2011

ANOTHER JUMPER? Man plays dangerous game atop Garagezilla

Police, news crews surround 5th and Walnut garage last night as man steps over edge

COLUMBIA, 6/30/11  (Beat Byte) -- For the second time in as many months, a person tempted fate atop Columbia's towering parking garage Wednesday night, raising serious questions about the structure's safety and the "attractive nuisance" -- for lack of a better phrase -- it continues to pose.

On my way home at approximately 7:40 last night, this writer observed a young man with an orange short-sleeve shirt and light-colored shorts step over the railing at least twice on the top story of the 5th and Walnut parking garage, overlooking the alley that runs parallel to Broadway.  A white police van and several squad cars cordoned off streets, while a KOMU news crew looked on. 
Not being in the daily breaking news biz, I notified the Columbia Daily Tribune (newsroom closed, according to recorded message) and the Columbia Missourian
While onlookers gathered, the man lingered at the top, leaning over and then stepping over the black railing -- with such ease as to suggest far better safety measures are required.   At one point, completely over the railing, he dipped his foot as far as he could to the next level down. 

It seemed morbid to stay longer after notifying other news outlets, so I left.  I did return later, and the man was gone and the police team was breaking up.   Fortunately, he survived his dangerous adventure atop the beast, but will the next person -- and there will be a next person, and a next, and a next -- be so lucky?
(The Columbia Tribune is reporting the man was threatening to jump and was apprehended by police officers).  
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  1. Another good reason for Boone Hospital to re-look at having an inpatient mental health unit. We need more resources and some people just won't seek help at the Univ. hospital due to past service.

  2. No word yet today of the suicide at 111 E. Broadway. Scanner traffic at 4:30 or so said that a man was found in a real estate office at that address, sitting in a chair with a hand gun in his lap and head trauma. It quickly turned to a death investigation. There were at least half a dozen other suicidal person calls yesterday, for some reason. Sad.