Camera fails to solve death plunge mystery
February 7, 2006
The camera used by a man who fell 300ft to his death from the Shell Tower in central London has failed to give police any clues as to how or why he fell.
Mystery continues to surround the death of the man ? now confirmed as 75-year-old Reginald Grogan from South Croydon ? who fell off the 25th floor of the building on London?s South Bank on 10 January.
It is understood that Grogan ? a former Shell employee ? had been taking pictures from a viewing gallery shortly before the fall. The death is not being treated as suspicious (see AP website news, 16 January).
Police had hoped to be able to recover some of the pictures from the camera found alongside Grogan?s body to help establish how ? or even whether ? he was taking pictures immediately before the tragedy.
First reports suggested Grogan had been using a film-based camera but it is now believed he had been using a digital model. The camera is understood to have smashed to pieces on impact.
A Metropolitan Police spokesman told us: ?Police attempted to recover pictures from the camera but no positive images could be recovered.?
Meanwhile, the viewing gallery at the top of the Shell building has been shut down while investigations continue into the incident.
AP was yesterday refused access to the viewing area when we asked whether a photographer would be allowed up to take pictures there. A security guard for the Shell building told us: ?No chance? it will be closed off for some time while police carry out their inquiries.?
The Shell building security guard told us that before the tragedy the gallery had only been open to Shell staff and, he claimed, was not open to the general public.
It was a sunny day in the capital on the day of the incident and it is believed Grogan toppled over the gallery?s chest-high barrier. The tower gives excellent views of landmarks such as the nearby London Eye.
Police were unable to comment further or give more details ahead of a full inquest into the death which is scheduled to take place at Southwark Coroners Court on 11 April.
A post-mortem at Greenwich Mortuary revealed that Grogan died from ?multiple injuries?.
It is understood that he paid regular visits to the Shell building to take pictures and to meet former colleagues.
Picture credit: freefoto.com