Bridge jumper had been charged with attempted kidnapping

Posted Monday, Jun. 02, 2008  comments  Print Reprints
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FORT WORTH — A man who jumped to his death from a highway overpass Friday was arrested two weeks earlier for allegedly trying to kidnap a girl walking home from school.

Ricardo Pardo Ferrera, 29, was free on $50,000 bail when he leaped off a U.S. 287 overpass while being chased by police.

Ferrera was charged May 19 with attempted kidnapping for allegedly trying to pull a 14-year-old girl into his truck in east Fort Worth. The girl told police the attack happened May 9 while she walked home near Texas Wesleyan University.

The girl said the man got her into the truck, but she fought him off and escaped, police said.

A piece of mail that fell from the truck during the attempted abduction led investigators to Ferrera, police said. He denied any involvement, but the victim picked him out of a photo line-up.

Ferrera was arrested May 10 and released on bail May 15.

Friday evening, a police officer spotted Ferrera acting suspiciously on East Tucker Street, an area known for drug dealing and prostitution, police said.

"He was driving slowly by the prostitutes and a dope house," major case Sgt. J.D. Moore said. "I think he may have stopped at one point. He caught the officer's attention."

The officer followed Ferrera, who drove erratically north on South Riverside Drive to U.S. 287. police said. On the overpass above I-30, he stopped his car, stepped out and dived off the side.

Ferrera died from multiple blunt trauma, according to the medical examiner. His death was ruled a suicide.

Why he jumped is a mystery, Moore said.

"At this point we really have no idea," he said. "We can't say what went through his mind."

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