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Man falls to death after scaling LAPD Hollenbeck station’s broadcast tower

Decorative panels on the exterior structure of the LAPD Hollenbeck Station with a tall broadcast tower next to it
The LAPD’s Hollenbeck station, where authorities say a man climbed up the side of the building and onto the broadcast tower, left, before falling to his death.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

A 31-year-old man died this week after falling from a broadcast tower atop the Los Angeles Police Department’s Hollenbeck station in Boyle Heights, authorities said.

The death has sparked a review of building security.

The man managed to climb an “outer architectural structure” on the front of the Hollenbeck station shortly after 6 p.m. Tuesday, then was able to access a small walkway leading to the tower, said Officer William Cooper, an LAPD spokesman.

Overall, shows the decorative panels on the back, exterior structure of the LAPD Hollenbeck Station
The man managed to climb this “outer architectural structure” on the side of the building before scaling the tower, an LAPD spokesperson said.
(Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times)

A witness saw the man fall from the tower to the pavement below, Cooper said. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The man was later identified as Jonathan Joseph Martinez of Los Angeles.

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It was not clear whether Martinez accidentally fell off the structure or jumped, but a death investigation is underway, officials said.

The Los Angeles County medical examiner-coroner said an autopsy was conducted Thursday, but a cause of death was not determined and more investigation will be done.

Capt. Stacy Spell, another LAPD spokesman, said the department is reviewing building security and access at the Hollenbeck station.

The station features wide panels that sit about a foot off the glass front of the building, at varying angles.

The front lobby of the Hollenbeck building, as well as other community police stations across the city, reopened to the public last week after extended closures during the COVID-19 pandemic.


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