A three-year-old boy with Down syndrome survived plunging from a fifth-story window in The Bronx after witnesses say a store awning broke his fall.
Jose Garcia was at his family’s apartment on East Tremont Avenue on Monday afternoon when he pushed away the cardboard flap of an air conditioner in the window and plummeted to the street below.
On his way down, the child hit an overhang attached to the wall of the building, which likely saved his life.
Surveillance video from the scene obtained by NBC New York shows the crying toddler sitting in the middle of the sidewalk and struggling to stand up as passersby surround him.
Jose’s family said he suffered a broken femur and underwent surgery, but was expected to recover.
Jose’s very close call came just before 1pm on Monday while he was in the care of his aunt and his older sister, Mia Jimenez.
Jimenez told CBS New York that one moment Jose was in the kitchen with them while their aunt was preparing food, and the next he moved to the bedroom and proceeded to remove the piece of cardboard separating the air conditioner from the window.
‘And then he just fell,’ the sister said.
The Administration of Children’s Services spoke to Jose’s relatives on Tuesday as part of its own investigation.
Three-year-old boy with Down syndrome survives a fall from the fifth-floor apartment window https://t.co/9BAwknZy8r— Times Of USA (@Timesof_Usa) May 5, 2021
The superintendent of the apartment building where Jose and his family reside said that air conditioning unit has seen been removed from the window and replaced with a window guard, which previously had been taken out to install the cooling device.
Police classified the boy’s fall as an accident and said that no criminal charges will be filed.