NSW Police are seeking a man who they say fled an apartment in the inner-city Sydney suburb of Surry Hills after he witnessed his Grindr date jump three floors from a balcony.
The 37-year-old victim, a Swedish-American national, survived the fall but is in a critical condition after he climbed over the railing on November 4.
Police from the Surry Hills Police Area Command discovered the man on the ground floor patio, where he was impaled on a table leg.
Surry Hills Commander Detective Superintendent Gavin Wood said the two men had met several hours before the fall on gay hookup app Grindr.
Witnesses told police the victim had climbed over the balcony himself, and police have released CCTV images of the man they’re seeking to help them shed light on the reason why.
Supt Wood stressed that despite the man being in the apartment for several hours that day, he doesn’t believe there was any foul play involved.
“This person is a witness, we don’t believe he has had any involvement in the person going over or his actions around the fall,” he said.
“We believe that person can shed light on the reason and rationale for this male to fall from the balcony.
“That person is a witness, I want to make that very very clear. He is a witness to this inquiry.”
The man is described as Middle Eastern/Mediterranean appearance with a slim build, dark hair, and at the time was wearing a dark t-shirt and blue jeans.
“We seek the public’s help and assistance in trying to establish the person depicted in that imagery,” Wood said.
“The appeal also includes making a call to that person to come forward and let us know the reason and the rationale around the circumstances around the fall.
“I’m very confident that people in the public when they see that vision will know who that is. We ask him to contact us.”
The man’s parents and brother have flown out from the United States to be with the man, who is in critical condition in an induced coma at St Vincent’s Hospital Intensive care unit.
Supt Wood said the incident could best be described as “horrendous”.
“For a young 37-year-old man, in the prime of his life, to be in an induced coma in a critical condition in a country he wasn’t born and bred in is horrific in anyone’s language,” he said.
“This man’s life has been significantly compromised… It’s our job now to establish why it has happened.”
Supt Wood urged users to stay “situationally aware” when on dating and hookup apps.
“Know who you are meeting, where you’re meeting them, what their intentions are and perhaps establish some safeguards beforehand such as providing close friends with those details,” he said.
Police have urged anyone who sees the man to call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000 or online at https://nsw.crimestoppers.com.au