The gorgeous scene you see above is none other than the George Washington Bridge, a double-decked suspension bridge that connects Manhattan in NYC to Fort Lee, New Jersey.
According to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, 15 people jumped to their deaths from the bridge in 2013. It stands at about 212 feet above the river at mid-span. During this time, 49 successful interventions took place in which potential jumpers were stopped by police or passers-by.
Unfortunately, yet another jump has occurred. In what could be considered a morbidly romantic suicide attempt, a couple jumped to their deaths off the George Washington Bridge at 11:20 AM on Monday morning, according to local police.
The two floated about 1,000 feet down the Hudson River before fire and police responders were able to pull them out around 12:09 PM. They were rushed to St Luke’s – Roosevelt Hospital Center. It was there that 40-year-old Nicki Hunt and her 41-year-old boyfriend, Gary Crockett, passed away one minute apart from each other.
Such a strange occurrence left many wondering why they did it. In a morbid way, it was a bit romantic, ending their lives together at the same time. But without further details, it was really difficult to pinpoint their reasons for the jump.
Wednesday brought new details to light; according to authorities, the couple might have committed a homicide before the leap.
Police were drawn to the village of Suffern, New York on Monday (which is about 35 miles northwest of the bridge) after a man called saying that he had found his uncle dead. According to the medical examiner, the man had been murdered by asphyxiation.
The victim was identified as 70-year-old William Valentini, who was living at the residence with his niece, Nicki, and her boyfriend, Gary.
The couple had apparently taken money from Valentini’s bank account without his authorization, police said.
Officers found a note at the scene which they interpreted to mean that the couple may have left the house wanting to harm themselves. Valentini’s vehicle was also missing and the key was later found on Hunt.
Police stated that both Hunt and Crockett had prior criminal records. While Hunt had faced grand larceny and forgery accusations, Crockett had been charged with possession of narcotics.
A Suffern police statement was released, saying, “The investigation is continuing but at this time we believe that Hunt and Crockett are responsible for the death of William Valenti.”