Man in grave condition after fall from Fan District rooftop

By Rachel DePompa - bio | email

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - A 21-year-old man is in grave condition tonight after jumping rooftops in Richmond's Fan District. It happened on North Boulevard around 2:30 Wednesday morning. According to police this was some sort of drunken game gone terribly wrong.

A ladder, beer and a three story building: A dangerous combination anytime, but certainly in the Fan District early Wednesday morning.

Neighbors like Meckenzi Cox are still trying to wrap their heads around exactly what happened.

"It's the beginning of the summer you're not expecting something like this when you're out with your friends. It's heard breaking to hear," said Cox.

Police said the young man was on the roof of his building at 9 North Boulevard when he jumped at least a six foot distance onto the rooftop of 7 North Boulevard. They said when he tried to jump back, he fell 40 feet to the ground.

And this story doesn't end there. The three friends used a ladder to get up there. Well, during the fall the ladder slipped and two of the victim's friends were stuck on the roof.

Lt. Shawn Jones is with the Richmond Fire Department. He said, "Some of our personnel along with the Richmond Police Department were yelling 'was anyone up there.' And nobody answered."

The men kept quiet as rescue crews tended to their friend. In fact, the fire department left the scene, but a short time later had to come back.

"We were later called back over here because the police had discovered there were in fact two individual still on the roof. We had to rescue them," said Jones.

Firefighters used a ladder on the truck to get them down. Neighbor say they moved in to 9 North Boulevard about two weeks ago.

"I've lived here for a long time and it's usually pretty quite back here. My heart goes out to him and his family," said Cox.

Most of the buildings in the fan are close together. Fire officials remind everyone tonight to stay off the roof tops and certainly never try to jump across them.

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