Model-Actor Sam Sarpong Dies After Jumping Off Bridge in Southern California

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After spending more than seven hours on a bridge in Pasadena, CA on Monday, British-born actor and model Sam Sarpong jumped to his death, according to police.

Sarpong, 40, held small roles in both TV and film, and modeled for fashion brands, such as Tommy Hilfiger, Gucci, and Versace.

According to PEOPLE, Sarpong was spotted on the the Colorado Street bridge in Pasadena on Monday morning by concerned citizens, who called for help.

Emergency officials responded to calls of a man on the bridge, and members of Sarpong’s family were eventually called to the scene to offer “background regarding his emotional state,” law enforcement told the magazine.

“Tragically, after approximately seven hours of communication, the male jumped from the bridge,” a police statement reads. “He was pronounced deceased by Pasadena Fire Paramedics at 3:52 p.m.”

Sarpong was the “face of Tommy Hilfiger” for six years, according to PEOPLE. He hosted MTV’s 2006 insult show Yo Momma, alongside Wilmer Valderrama. Following the conclusion of the show, he hosted the BET pre-awards show All Access.

He also appeared in two episodes of Fox network’s Bones in early 2015, and will appear on an episode of the FX series American Crime Story in 2016.

Following his death, his family released a statement to the media through a representative.

“It is with great sadness that the family of Samuel Sarpong, Jr. must share the news that Sam has passed away,” said the statement. “The family appreciates the thoughts prayers and other expressions of sympathy, and request their privacy be respected at this extremely difficult time.”

Sarpong’s sister, June Sarpong, is a TV personality in the United Kingdom.


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