SAN DIEGO — The San Diego Police Department has concluded that a 40-year-old woman died by suicide when she fell from a third-floor hallway in Petco Park last September, killing her and her 2-year-old son.
The woman, Raquel Wilkins, and her son, Denzel Browning-Wilkins, were pronounced dead on September 25, shortly before a baseball game there between the San Diego Padres and Atlanta Braves. The San Diego Police Department initially said the deaths “appeared suspicious,” but did not say Wednesday how they arrived at their conclusion.
“The detectives conducted a thorough and comprehensive investigation involving dozens of interviews, reviewing available video footage and gathering background information to determine what led to the deaths,” police said in a press release on Wednesday. “In consultation with the San Diego County medical examiner, the death of Raquel Wilkins has been classified as suicide and the death of Denzel Browning-Wilkins has been classified as murder. The San Diego Police Department will not comment further on the matter.”
A lawyer for the woman’s family, Dan Gilleon, expressed his dismay on Wednesday and said the family is considering a lawsuit against the city, which owns the stadium.
“SDPD will tell the world that Raquel Wilkins killed herself and her baby,” Gilleon said on Twitter. “But they won’t have the human decency to bother to explain why they think that. Imagine how Raquel’s family feels about such a terrible event.”
In a domestic dispute in 2016, the woman’s ex-boyfriend said in a court statement that she had a history of suicidal behavior after she accused him of abuse and filed a restraining order against him. Gilleon noted that the statement came in response to the woman’s allegations against the ex-boyfriend and said in a text message to USA TODAY Sports that her family had never heard or seen thoughts of suicide with Wilkins.
“All the stories were that she was laughing and having fun until for some reason she ended up on the picnic table that was against the railing” before falling, Gilleon explained.
Police described their investigation as “exhaustive” and thanked those who came forward with information. After being made aware of the incident that day, two officers arrived to discover the bodies on the sidewalk at 200 Tony Gwynn Way. The officers began CPR but determined that the woman and child died at the scene as a result of traumatic injuries. injuries.
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