Ex-Florida Gator's suicide is third falling death at Lincoln Square since 2006
By JOSHUA ADAM HICKS
Bellevue Reporter Former Staff Writer
August 12, 2010 · Updated 4:12 PM
Original post August 10
The suicide of a former University of Florida football player last Thursday marked the third falling death at Lincoln Square since 2006.
John Curtis IV, 24, jumped to his death from a fourth-floor railing at the downtown Bellevue complex on August 5. The King County Medical Examiner's Office said the Cocoa Beach, Fla. native died of injuries caused by suicide.
In January 2009, newly hired Microsoft worker Jin Chen died at age 22 after falling from the 28th floor of the Lincoln Square office complex.
The medical examiner initially ruled the death a suicide, but said the cause was "undetermined" two months later due to "uncertainty pertaining to the decendent's intentions for the action that immediately preceded his death."
A shopper also fell to his death in an elevator shaft at the Lincoln Square shopping center in 2006.
Kirkland resident Jeremy Johnson slipped down the tunnel after the elevator became stuck, and its occupants pried open the elevator door to exit.
All three other occupants made it out safely.
Curtis' death is the only to be ruled a certain suicide at Lincoln Square.
Police officers arrived at the complex around 8 a.m. on August 5 in response to reports of a man sitting on the railing above Earls Restaurant. The officers briefly contacted the subject, but he jumped.
The medical examiner's report said Curtis died of injuries to his lungs, heart, kidney and liver, as well as blunt-force injury of the head and torso.
Curtis came to Florida as a safety prospect in 2004. He missed his second season due to a knee injury and played on special teams the following two years.
He missed the 2008 season after re-injuring his knee, but still finished his career with 11 tackles and two national championship rings, according to the Associated Press.
"It's tragic when a young life is lost," Florida coach Urban Meyer said. "I'm not sure how you describe the loss of life in words. John was a great young man who was a proud member of our Gator family. We grieve for him, his friends and his family and pray for their comfort."
(Staff reporter Lindsay Larin contributed to this report)