A San Francisco man allegedly pushed out of a fifth-story window in the wee hours who plummeted to the pavement below escaped with only a dislocated right shoulder and fractured right arm -- a turn of events the San Francisco Police Department has described as "amazing."
The incident took place at roughly 2 a.m. Thursday morning, when an altercation, possibly fueled by alcohol, broke out at 776 Bush Street, the Burke-Lewis Apartments
. Police say 40-year-old Tregg Smith, a building resident, pushed the unidentified 32-year-old victim with both hands, sending the resident of the 600 block of Bush tumbling out a fifth-story window and down to the street below.
The defenestrated victim was transported to San Francisco General Hospital where he was treated for his injuries. Smith was booked by police for charges of attempted homicide.
While "lucky" may not be the term most intuitively applied to a man who just fell more than 50 feet, the 32-year-old truly is blessed. Anecdotes -- and scientific studies -- have shown that falls of five stories or greater are most often fatal. These injuries really are comparatively minor.
And while the San Francisco man has not been named, this incident brings to mind that most famous defenestration of all: the Defenestration of Prague in 1618, in which a pair of imperial regents and their secretary -- William Slavata, Jaroslav Martinic and Fabricius the secretary -- were hurled out a window by enraged Bohemian Protestants, helping to trigger the Thirty Year's War. Those three, legendarily, were saved only by landing in a large dung heap. The San Francisco victim, meanwhile, had no such luxury.