Man dies after 60-foot fall at former Seagram’s site
Wednesday, 22 August 2012 11:08

Victim fell after catwalk collapsed

by Nicole Rodman

    A 19-year-old resident of the 3100 block of Shortway is dead after falling from a 60-foot-high catwalk at the former Seagram’s Distillery site on Sollers Point Road on Aug. 18.
    Baltimore County Police have identified the victim as Patrick James Miskimon.
    According to county police spokeswoman Louise Rogers-Feher,  police received an emergency call last Saturday at 3:49 p.m. informing them that a male had fallen at the site.
    The victim and a friend, 19-year-old Joseph Lee Toft Jr., were on the property without permission when they decided to go up to a fifth-floor catwalk in one of the abandoned buildings.
   

While Miskimon was standing on the catwalk it collapsed, dropping him 60 feet to the floor below.
    Following Miskimon’s fall, Toft, who was not on the catwalk, called 911.
    Miskimon was flown to the University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center, where he later died.
    In remarks to The Eagle following last Saturday’s events, John Vontran, owner of the former Seagram’s site, noted that he is eager to tear down the abandoned buildings but he is still awaiting approval of the razing permit he filed with Baltimore County nearly three months ago.
    Vontran must also await the Baltimore County Council’s final decision on his pending zoning change request before doing any work at the site.
    According to the county council website, zoning decisions should be made by Sunday, Sept. 16.
    Finally, as part of the Maryland Department of the Environment’s Voluntary Cleanup Program, Vontran must wait for his response action plan, detailing his plans for cleaning up the Seagram’s site,  to be approved before any demolition or construction can take place.
    Once these three pieces are in place, Vontran plans to tear down the abandoned buildings posing such a safety hazard to the community.
    According to Vontran, he planned to spend as much time as possible this week trying to push his  permit requests through.
    Since Vontran took over the site in 2008, there have been dozens of arson fires set and trespassers arrested at the Sollers Point Road site.