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Death plunge at JP Morgan tower not suspicious, police say

Reuters with CNBC
Simon Dawson | Bloomberg | Getty Images

A man fell to his death from JP Morgan's 33-storey tower in the heart of London's Canary Wharf financial district on Tuesday in what British police said was a "non-suspicious" incident.

Police were called to the glass skyscraper at 8:02 GMT, where a 39-year-old man was pronounced dead at the scene after hitting a lower 9th-floor roof. Witnesses said the body remained on the roof for several hours.

The 39-year-old was named as Gabriel Magee, vice-president in corporate and investment banking technology at the firm, a source at JP Morgan confirmed . He had been with JP Morgan since 2004.

"No arrests have been made and the incident is being treated as non-suspicious at this early stage," London police said in a statement.

Police said they believed they knew the identity of the man but were awaiting formal identification.

In a statement JP Morgan said: "We are deeply saddened to have lost a member of the JP Morgan family at 25 Bank Street today. Our thoughts and sympathy are with his family and his friends."

Workers in Canary Wharf, whose Manhattan-style skyscrapers constitute one of the most powerful financial citadels on earth, took to Twitter to express their shock at the death.

"The 9th floor roof of JP Morgan is visible from my office window," tweeted Hetal V Patel. "For a long time the body was left cordoned and unattended. Weird. #Wharf."

The JP Morgan building has been the headquarters of the bank's Europe, Middle East and Africa operation since July 2012. It was previously occupied by Lehman Brothers, whose staff left with their belongings in cardboard boxes after the investment bank filed for bankruptcy on September 15, 2008.

Home to Barclays, Citi, Credit Suisse, HSBC, JP Morgan, Morgan Stanley, State Street and Thomson Reuters, Canary Wharf, which lies to the east of central London, is the spine of the only financial capital to threaten New York.

Though the details of Tuesday's incident are still unclear, occasional suicides by people working in London's most powerful banks have provoked criticism of the demands placed on some financial services workers.

A Bank of America exchange manager jumped in front of a train and another man jumped from a seventh-floor restaurant, both in 2012. A German-born intern at Bank of America died of epilepsy last year in London.

On Tuesday, when asked about the death of William Broeksmit, a former senior manager at Deutsche Bank, London police said a 58-year-old man had been found hanging at a house in South Kensington on Sunday afternoon.