Police seek two young men for questioning about the death of a Medford skateboarder
As friends and family of 23-year-old Christopher Lynn Bitgood mourned his death, questions remained Friday about the skateboarder's fall from a downtown Medford parking garage.
He's jumped off things just as high as this, said 18-year-old Megan McCoy, Bitgood's former girlfriend.
He just fell wrong somehow, but we're just not sure how, said Medford police Lt. Mike Moran.
Police reported that Bitgood suffered head injuries when he jumped from the second story of the parking garage Monday night. The skateboarder was trying to evade a security officer patrolling the building, Moran said.
After throwing his skateboard from the second story, Bitgood briefly hung from a ledge and dropped about 10 feet onto the sidewalk at Sixth and Bartlett streets, Moran said. Bitgood was bleeding from his ears when emergency medical crews arrived around 9:25 p.m., police said. He was not wearing a helmet.
Bitgood died late Tuesday morning at Providence Medford Medical Center.
Investigators still are trying to find two other young men who left when they saw the security guard, Moran said. Police interviewed another skateboarder at the scene, Moran said.
Friends have placed flowers, candles, letters and photos at the spot where Bitgood fell. Messages reading We love you, Daddy Bitgood and I'll see you when I get there are scrawled in permanent marker on the garage's walls.
Police have erased some messages etched in chalk and are warning mourners about the fines for vandalizing public property with markers and spray paint.
We're going to be somewhat sympathetic to their initial shrine, Moran said. But if there's anything that's permanent, that's eventually going to be removed.
I don't want people to just trash it and throw it all away, McCoy said, adding that she wants to approach city officials about a permanent memorial such as a plaque or mural.
A Medford resident, Bitgood had been on probation since August last year after he was convicted of criminal trespass. He also was convicted of numerous property crimes, assault and driving under the influence of intoxicants in the past two years.
A lot of people thought he was up to no good, McCoy said. But that was totally not the case. He was the most awesome person.
A memorial service was held at Table Rock Christian Fellowship Friday afternoon. Bitgood is survived by his parents, Jeffrey and Eugenia Bitgood, and a sister, Courtney Bitgood, all of Central Point.