In the nearly 30 years since it was built in 1983, the sprawling Aventura Mall had been the scene of just one suicide.
But in the last few weeks, three people have killed themselves at mall parking garages, including a woman who leapt to her death on Thursday -- an alarming uptick in fatalities for the upscale shopping center, which boasts a considerable security effort according to local police.
“If somebody wants to kill themselves... there’s no rhyme no reason," Aventura Police Major Skip Washa told HuffPost Miami, noting that the mall employees off-duty officers as well as additional security on bikes and golf carts. "There’s no way to really try to prevent that.”
An unidentified Hispanic woman in her mid-40s jumped to her death from the parking garage Thursday, Washa said. According to the Miami Herald, a witness spotted the woman around 2:30 p.m. and was unable to talk her out of jumping.
The woman was not carrying any form of identification, and her fingerprints did not come up in the system, Washa said. Investigators are now trying to identify her through missing persons reports.
Two suicides at the mall last month happened within days. On March 14, 21-year-old nursing student Morvin Andre jumped from the parking garage to evade loss prevention officers from Bloomingdales, leading his death to be ruled a suicide. At his funeral, a gang-related drive-by killed 2 people and injured another 12, one of the bloodiest mass shootings in Miami-Dade history.
Days later on March 19, a 15-year-old boy committed suicide by jumping from the parking garage in the wee hours of the morning.
Washa said that a security video showed the boy hiding when people walked by, waiting for them to leave, and finally jumping.
The first of the four suicides at Aventura happened several years ago when according to Washa a man broke from police custody and jumped off the parking garage.