( 4UMF NEWS ) Student Dies After Falling From Jumbotron:
A trip to the top of Mississippi State’s football stadium ended in tragedy after a 21-year-old student fell off the scoreboard and died.
Andrew Demboski and two of his friends snuck into the university’s stadium — which was supposed to be locked — and climbed the Jumbotron early Saturday morning.
While coming back down, the MSU junior fell after losing his footing, dropping 18 feet off the 47-feet-tall Jumbotron and suffering cardiac arrest after slamming his head at about 1:30 a.m. on Saturday.
“What he was walking on was not designed to be walked on,” Oktibbeha County Coroner Michael Hunt told the Clarion-Ledger. “We’re lucky all three of them didn’t get hurt.”
First responders had to cut through a lock to get into the stadium, and then used a system of pulleys and a basket to retrieve the student’s perched body, according to reports.
“Andrew was a very talented student. Our campus is saddened by this loss on the day of Spring Commencement and we all mourn Andrew’s passing and are keeping his family in our prayers,” MSU public relations director Sid Salter said in a statement.
Friday night had been spring commencement for some students, while a second ceremony was held Saturday morning at Humphrey Coliseum, the school’s basketball area.
Students frequently jump the fence and climb up the Jumbotron through an accessible and unlocked maintenance door, either for the view or the adrenaline rush, the Sun Herald reported.
The university is looking into improving its security after the student’s fatal fall.
“The stadium is locked for a reason and that it is trespassing, a serious crime for anyone to enter that locked facility,” Salter said. “During my student days anyone could enter the stadium 24 hours a day. But with each expansion of the stadium, have come increased new security measures.”
The two friends who joined the student on the deadly climb will not be charged with trespassing after suffering a “very difficult emotional trauma,” Salter said. Students in the future who trespass there will be charged, Salter warned.
The $6.1 million Jumbotron was built in 2008, and has a system of ladders and landings inside, which Demboski used to climb before his death.
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