Emergency crews in Souther Oregon were continuing there search for 23-year-old Brian Lewinstein, who slipped and fell off the popular Toketee Falls on Sunday. While he has not yet been found, officials are assuming the fall was fatal.
Lewinstein crossed a safety fence at the waterfall in the Umpqua National Forest to snap a photo, but slipped off a cliff above the falls and into the water below. It’s unclear where Lewinstein fell at the waterfall, but at its peak Toketee Falls is 113-feet tall.
“My understanding is that it was a fatality. He fell a long distance into the water. It’s a pretty fast-moving stream. They’ve searched the river for him. If he were alive, I think they would have found him,” said Cheryl Caplan, spokeswoman for the Umpqua National Forest, which includes Toketee Falls. “That area is very steep, and people get quite intrigued by water and always want a better photo. Our hearts are broken over this.”
Lewinstein was a law student at UC Berkeley and recently worked with juvenile offenders this summer and oversaw a project in which the law student attempted to change juvenile court policies on fees and fines. He was on track to graduate in May of 2020.
The news comes as another young man died jumping off Burney Falls in early-July. With many people attempting to get great photos and videos for the internet, it’s important that people realize the real-life danger with such risks.