Colin Cotter NYC Upper West Side man falls five floors below to his death while having cigarette. Jessica Rayo, victim’s girlfriend calls the death suspicious.
Colin Cotter, 30, was pronounced dead at the spot where he landed behind his W. 81st St. building after the 1:38 a.m. plunge. His roommate was sleeping inside when Cotter tumbled from the fire escape, with police surmising that the movie production assistant slipped and fell.
Cotter had gone out with a friend earlier that evening, where they had been drinking ‘heavily’ reported the nydailynews.
Girlfriend Jessica Rayo, 32, said she received a text message reading ‘good night my love’ from her boyfriend of three years shortly before the fatal plunge.
While cops said the man’s death was not considered suspicious, Rayo isn’t necessarily convinced that there was something more sinister at play.
Accident or something more ominous?
‘This situation is very fishy and I don’t like it at all,’ she told the nydailynews. ‘I want an investigation. I want to find out … A big guy like that is just going to fall?’
Rayo said the couple was set to move into a new apartment together. Cotter according to the girlfriend often stepped outside to share a cigarette at his current home.
‘Listen, we used to smoke on that fire escape all the time,’ she told the tabloid. ‘I basically live with him. How is he going to slip? And if it’s raining, how is he going to be smoking outside? The first thing you do is go inside.’
Cotter — an activist who attended dozens of Black Lives Matter protests in recent weeks — would often smoke on the fire escape, neighbors told police.
‘He’s been up there 1,000 times and he was a strong guy,’ said Daniel Baker, 35, a friend of Rayo’s. ‘That guy was taller than me, and he was stronger. I haven’t met many people in my life that are like Colin. He was one of the few people where if you do a favor for him, he’ll return it.’
Yet lingering questions remained about Cotter’s death, with one neighbor claiming the resident couldn’t have fallen unless he was standing on the fire escape railing. A surveillance video also showed Cotter plummeting ‘at an angle’ — leading police to initially suspect Cotter was the victim of foul play, the neighbor said.
‘(He) didn’t come down like a torpedo,’ the neighbor said. ‘At first they thought it was a suicide, then they thought it was suspicious. But the detectives ruled out a suicide.’
Over the last several months, Cotter often served as an unofficial medic at BLM protests, the neighbor said.
“He was getting donated free masks and supplies to hand out at the protests,” the neighbor recalled. “He also had his rolling bag case with a red cross taped on it. He was all about the protests and doing his part.”