Man dies after surgery following jump from upper floor of Burnham 310 building
CHAMPAIGN — The man who died after jumping from a high-rise apartment building in the campus area was a graduate student at the University of Illinois.
According to university records, Jeronymo Pereira, 30, of Urbana, was a graduate student in civil engineering.
Champaign County Coroner Duane Northrup said that Mr. Pereira, 30, was pronounced dead at 1:50 p.m. Thursday at Carle Foundation Hospital.
The cause of death was multiple traumatic injuries, Northrup said, adding the case is being investigated as a suicide. He said there would be no autopsy but toxicology tests would be done.
Champaign police Sgt. Jim Rein said the man had been operated on at Carle after jumping Thursday morning from an upper floor of the Burnham 310 building on West Springfield Avenue between Third and Fourth streets.
Rein said the man was believed to have family in the community who were at the hospital but declined to speak to police. He did not live in the building.
“He busted out a window ... on the west side. He fell on to the adjoining four-story building below, then he got up and jumped off that building, too. How in the world he gets up is beyond all of us,” said Rein.
Rein said witnesses saw the man jump. He used a fire extinguisher to break out a window in a common hallway of the 18th floor.
“It’s a secure building. Our best guess is he waited for someone to come out a door and he followed in behind them,” Rein said.
Rein said there were “three good eyewitnesses” but police spoke to about a dozen, including residents on the floor from which the man jumped and three people who were getting ready for an Easter egg hunt in Scott Park across Springfield Avenue to the south.
Police had Springfield closed for at least two hours after the incident while building maintenance workers removed the glass.
“That wind wasn’t helping anything. It blew glass everywhere,” Rein said.
Rein said two detectives saw the man before he was taken to the hospital and said he could speak.