San Francisco police have identified the man who died at Sunday’s Phish concert as Ryan Prosser, 47. Officers believe that the man jumped from the upper level of the Chase Center instead of accidently falling, which was originally reported. Officers and shocked fans are trying to determine why he leapt from an upper deck.
Robert Moen of Austin, Texas, told reporters that he saw the moment the man jumped over the edge. “We were a couple rows behind the first guy that jumped intentionally and we saw him right when he put his feet on the barrier, stood up and just leapt,” said Moen. “He went out of view and I realized later, that was a huge drop, maybe four stories or so.”
The tragic death happened just around 9 p.m. Sunday night. Concert security were alerted to a fan who needed medical attention because of a fall. Medical personnel tried to perform CPR on the man who jumped, but it was too late.
According to officers and other fans who were around the area where the man landed, the man didn’t land on any person or barrier, instead landed in a seat that had just been vacated. A man on a Reddit thread told the Internet that Prosser landed right next to his buddy and that any closer his friend would have been injured.
This was not the only fall that night. Nearly an hour after police were called to help with Prosser, another individual fell from an upper level and landed on another concert-goer. Both men were injured and taken to the hospital later that night.
Some fans are wondering if drugs or alcohol had anything to do with the tragic death of the Athens man. The investigation into his death is still ongoing.
After the man jumped, the Chase Center issued a statement and said that they are giving their “heartfelt condolences,” to Prosser’s family and are actively working with the San Francisco police in their investigation.
The event center also said that “Chase Center was built and is operated in accordance with all safety standards and requirements governing facilities of its kind in the state of California and the city and county of San Francisco,” said Kimberly Veale, spokesperson for the center.
Some fans are saying that the Chase Center needs to do better when it comes to their safety measures. Evan Reeves, the individual who was involved in the second fall and had another Phish fan fall on him, said that he moved seats because he didn’t feel safe dancing in the upper levels of the Chase Center.
“The balcony rows are super narrow, so it’s really hard to dance at your seat without fearing that you’re going to trip and fall,” he said. “I just decided to find another spot.” Ryan’s main concern was the plexiglass barriers that lined the upper levels. He told reporters, “Those pony walls seriously need to be more than a few inches higher,” Reeves said. “When I met my friend at my assigned seat, we were commenting to each other how low and dangerous the wall is.”
Another fan from the Phish concert saw Prosser moments before he jumped. According to her, the man was dancing in Row 1, Section 221 with his foot up on one of the barriers. The woman said that she remembered thinking to herself that his actions looked dangerous.
Friends and family of Ryan Prosser are shocked that he was taken so soon. According to Frank Bauer, a longtime friend of Prosser’s, he believes that his friend wouldn’t have intentionally jumped from that height. The two men grew up together, and he was surprised that his friend traveled that far for a Phish concert, apparently he was more of a Deadhead.