19-year-old student falls to death after taking selfies on Ermita roofdeck
MANILA, Philippines — A 19-year-old mass communication student fell 20 floors to her death after taking selfies on the roofdeck of a condominium building in Ermita, Manila, on Tuesday evening.
The case investigator, Police Officer 3 Al Layugan, said Cristina Marie Pagalilauan of the Adamson University had just finished taking selfies with classmate Jonea Mildred Ani on top of Dahlia Tower, Suntrust Parkview Condominium on Natividad street when she fell.
“Pagalilauan, according to Ani, was not satisfied with the photos they had taken so she decided to climb up the parapet wall,” Layugan, a homicide investigator, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer.
Ani said he did not see Pagalilauan fall because she was then busy scanning the photos they had just taken.
“All [Ani] remembered was telling her classmate not to climb the wall,” Layugan said.
Police Officer 3 Amelito Lopez said the accidental death was reported to Manila Police District at 7 p.m. He said no one rushed Pagalilauan to the hospital. When cops arrived there, the body was taken to the St. Rich Funeral Homes.
Layugan added that some of the people who saw what happened even told Ani that her friend was already dead anyway.
Layugan said the students went to the condominium from school because Ani wanted to dye Pagalilauan’s hair. None of the girls live there. Pagalilauan’s boyfriend, who is currently in Mindanao, rents a unit on the fourth floor, according to the police.
At the unit, the classmates postponed the hairdying and decided to take photos instead. And then, Pagalilauan invited Ani to the roofdeck so they could see the sunset, saying it would make a nice background for their pictures.
Layugan said the students took selfies at a safer spot on the deck but Pagalilauan allegedly asked Ani to move to the parapet wall so they could capture the view and images from below the deck.
After taking photos, Ani turned her attention to her phone and started scanning it to check which shots were good. Then, according to Layugan, Pagalilauan said: “I’m climbing the wall, take my photo.”
Ani didn’t see Pagalilauan leave, she just heard her voice because she was busy viewing the pictures. Still, while glued to her phone, Ani replied: “Don’t! You might fall.”
The next thing Ani saw was half of Pagalilauan’s body as it descended down the building.
“Ani looked for guards who could help them, but there was none. Neither was there ambulance, paramedic, or nurse in the building,” said Layugan. SFM
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