More details have come to light surrounding the tragic apparent suicide of Sam Sarpong on Monday, Oct. 26. According to a press release from the Pasadena Police Department, the British-American actor, model, and TV personality jumped off a bridge in Pasadena, Calif., after a seven-hour exchange with the authorities. Sarpong was 40 at the time of his death.
A witness spotted the former Tommy Hilfiger spokesmodel early Monday morning and called the authorities. A team of emergency personnel rushed to the scene, where they reached out to Sarpong via the Department Crisis Negotiation Team.
“While conversing with the individual, members of his family arrived and provided background regarding his emotional state,” the release read. “Tragically, after approximately seven hours of communication, the male jumped from the bridge into the Arroyo.”
Sarpong is survived by his sister, June Sarpong, and father, Samuel Sarpong Sr. In addition to being the face of Tommy Hilfiger, Sam was a co-host on MTV’s Yo Momma and an actor with 76 credits to his name.
“It is sad and troubling when an individual has become so despondent that he or she feels their only option is to end their life,” Police Chief Phillip Sanchez said in the release. “These incidents can often have a significant impact on the victim’s loved ones, first responders, and the community as a whole. My prayers go out to the family.”
Shortly after the news broke, Sarpong’s family released a statement, saying, “It is with great sadness that the family of Samuel Sarpong, Jr. must share the news that Sam has passed away. The circumstances surrounding his death are currently under investigation and no additional details are known at this time. Information about final arrangements will be forthcoming. The family appreciates the thoughts prayers and other expressions of sympathy, and request their privacy be respected at this extremely difficult time. Samuel Sarpong Jr. is survived by his father Samuel Sarpong Sr., and his sister June Sarpong. Samuel Sarpong was 40 years old.”
If you or someone you know is struggling, please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
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