A UC Irvine alumnus is believed to have thrown his mother from a building on campus before jumping to her death Tuesday in an incident authorities are investigating as a murder-suicide.
The bodies of Andrew Nguyen Doan, 36, and Thao Thi Nguyen, 77, both of Irvine, were found in a plaza at the College of Social Sciences Tuesday afternoon, according to the Irvine Police Department.
“The investigation determined that Doan picked up Nguyen and threw her off the landing of a multi-story building,” police said. “Doan then jumped from the same landing to her death.”
Doan majored in Biological Sciences at UC Irvine from September 2017 to June 2019; she did not graduate, according to UCI spokesman Tom Vasich.
Campus police received multiple 911 calls reporting two people on the ground in front of a building just before 4 p.m. Tuesday, Irvine police said. The couple’s bodies were found in the plaza in the 200 block of Pereira Drive.
The reason for Tuesday’s fatal incident is not known, but police said they had contacted Doan “several times in the past,” most recently in 2019 about “mental health issues.”
Orange County Superior Court records show Doan pleaded guilty on July 10, 2020, to sexual assault in connection with an incident that had occurred approximately a year earlier.
The 2019 case involved sexual assault of his roommate at a psychiatric hospital, said Kimberly Edds, a spokeswoman for the Orange County district attorney’s office.
Court records show that Nguyen posted $100,000 bail for his son on September 26, 2019, and that he was later sentenced to 156 days in jail and received three years of probation.
Doan’s probation ended on July 22 of this year, court records show.
Friday was the last day of the fall quarter at the Orange County campus, so few students were at the scene when the bodies were found, Vasich said. Still, the university made counselors available Wednesday for students and others affected by the incident.
Signs with phone numbers for suicide hotlines and similar messages are posted on the stairwells near where the bodies were found, Vasich said, and more signs are posted at various locations on campus.
In 2014, Maxwell Chorak, 25, of Santa Ana jumped to his death from a social studies building on the UC Irvine campus, according to authorities. He died in the same square where the bodies of Nguyen and Doan were found on Tuesday.
Chorak’s stepfather, Matthew Holtzmann, wrote in a personal blog post at the time her stepson had suffered from mental health issues.
She wrote of the site where her son had jumped: “The parking structure had suicide prevention tiles with hotline numbers taped to the walls from the third floor up. It was the culmination of every parent’s worst nightmare.”
This story originally appeared on Los Angeles Times.