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Witness to Petco Fall: Woman Was Jumping on Bench

Paul Steinbach

A witness to Saturday's deadly fall of a 40-year-old mother and her 2-year-old son at Petco Park said the mother had a close call while jumping on a picnic table bench, then climbed up on the bench with her child a second time.

As reported by NBC affiliate KNSD, the mother, child and a man were sitting at a picnic table on the third concourse of the stadium at around 4 p.m. Saturday, just before the first pitch of the San Diego Padres game, according to the San Diego Police Department.

The witness, who did not wish to be identified, provided a written statement shared to KNSD. In it, she said she was sitting with her son at the table next to the mother and toddler.

"The man that was with her was standing by the railing as the woman started jumping on the bench of the table closest to the railing, holding the baby in her arms. She seemed happy — laughing," the witness said.

That's when the mother fell off the bench the first time.

"About 30 seconds or a minute later, she jumped back up and did it again, facing the man as she jumped with the baby," the witness recalled. "I remember saying, 'I can’t believe she’s doing that again,' and then she was gone... From my vantage point, looking at her back, it was almost like she rolled over the railing. I told my son, 'Oh my gosh she went over!'

"There were no screams: It was just eerily quiet. Unfortunately, we heard the sound when they hit the ground."

Game-day employee Shannon Denbow told NBC 7 she returned to the ballpark the morning after the deadly fall and took pictures of the picnic area where the mother and child had fallen from. The pictures show the tables in close proximity to a fenced railing at the edge of the third-level concourse.

Responding officers found the mother and child severely injured on the pavement below along Tony Gwynn Way. Emergency responders tried to revive them with CPR but due to their severe injuries, both the mother and toddler died at the scene.

The San Diego Police Homicide Unit was called to the scene.

"It’s far too early for us to have any information as to whether or not this is intentional or accidental," SDPD Lt. Andra Brown said on Saturday.

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