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Cops: Man who jumped from Jones Beach balcony critical

Phish in concert at Nikon at Jones BeachTheater.

Phish in concert at Nikon at Jones BeachTheater. (June 2, 2009) Credit: Michael E. Ach, 2009

Police said a man seriously injured Wednesday night during a Phish concert at the Jones Beach amphitheater did not fall from a second-tier balcony as first reported - he jumped over a railing, landing 25 to 30 feet below in another seating area. One person in that landing area suffered minor injuries, police said.

The jumper was a 30-year-old man from Maine, police said. EMTs and other emergency workers and State Park Police treated him at the scene, and brought him outside to a helicopter landing area, officials said. He was then airlifted from the Wantagh venue to Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow.

State Park Police said the man, whom they did not identify, was in critical condition Thursday in the hospital's intensive care unit, but was stable and expected to survive.

"I couldn't believe it when I saw it," said State Park Police Sgt. Anthony Astacio, an 18-year park police veteran, who said he had never experienced anything like that at a concert there. "He's very lucky," he said.

The concertgoer who suffered minor injuries when the jumper landed was treated at the scene, and remained at the amphitheater to see the rest of the Phish concert, police said.

The concert was sold out, police said, but many people in the area where the man landed were elsewhere at that time, getting refreshments during the intermission.

No charges were filed Thursday against the jumper, Astacio said. Police have not been able to fully interview him because of his condition, Astacio said, but the investigation will continue.

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