September Petco Park Deaths Ruled Suicide & Homicide, Family Disputes Decision
San Diego police have concluded that Raquel Wilkins died by suicide when she fell from the third deck at Petco Park last September, which also killed her two-year-old son, Denzel Browning-Wilkins.
The pair were pronounced dead on the scene on September 25, shortly before the Padres were set to host the Atlanta Braves.
Police officials initially said the deaths “appeared to be suspicious” but did not say Wednesday how they reached their conclusion.
“The detectives conducted a thorough and comprehensive investigation that included dozens of interviews, reviewing of available video footage, and collecting background information to determine what led to the deaths,” the police said Wednesday. “In consultation with the San Diego County Medical Examiner, Raquel Wilkins’ death has been classified a suicide and Denzel Browning-Wilkins’ death has been classified a homicide. The San Diego Police Department will not be making any further comment on the case.”
An attorney for Wilkins’ family, Dan Gilleon, expressed his displeasure and said the family is considering a lawsuit against the city, which owns 70% of the ballpark.
The city owns Petco Park. It’s a defendant in the wrongful death case. Four months ago, the city’s mayor went to the press to blame Raquel Wilkins. Today, the city’s police echoed the mayor. But defendants do this. They blame the victim especially when she can’t defend herself.
— Dan Gilleon (@dangilleon) January 20, 2022
Four months after Raquel Wilkins and her baby fell to their deaths from Petco Park, the City of San Diego—which owns Petco Park—will have its police department issue a press release blaming Raquel. But they won’t release any details, even to the family.
— Dan Gilleon (@dangilleon) January 19, 2022
— Dan Gilleon (@dangilleon) September 30, 2021
One of Wilkins’ ex-boyfriends testified in court that she had a history of suicidal behavior after she accused him of abuse and sought a restraining order against him in 2016.
“All accounts were that she was smiling and having fun until she, for some reason, ended up on the picnic table that was right up against the railing” before she fell over it onto the street below, Gilleon stated.
Gilleon added that the city was acting like a defendant in a lawsuit with the victim-blaming. He also said the safety value of the railing’s height was “all but negated” by the table she was at.
“The city doesn’t want to explain why it concluded that a young mother would kill her only child at an event where witnesses said she was happy,” Gilleon said in a text message.
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