The recently divorced mother who plunged to her death along with her five-year-old daughter from the roof of a 12-story Manhattan building on Sunday had been weaning herself from antidepressants because she feared becoming addicted, the woman’s distraught family and friends have revealed.
The incident took place around 1.30pm where the woman, identified as 39-year-old Oksana Motyka Patchin, leaped off the rooftop at 540 West 53rd St near 11th Avenue in Manhattan’s Hell’s Kitchen.
Patchin and her daughter, Olivia, were able to access the roof after the woman asked her friend who lives in the building to borrow her key card so she could show her five-year-old the view from the top.
Patchin’s closest friend of 14 years told DailyMail.com in a phone interview on Monday that the divorced mom-of-one had been struggling with insomnia and panic attacks since the summer and sought psychiatric help.
The friend, who asked to not be named, said that Patchin in short order was diagnosed with clinical depression, despite not having a prior history of mental health issues, and was prescribed antidepressants that purportedly made her feel worse.
Oksana Motyka Patchin, 39, has been identified as the mother who jumped from the roof of a Manhattan building with her five-year-old daughter, Olivia (right), in her arms, killing both, on Sunday
On Sunday afternoon a Oksana Patchin 39, holding her five-year-old daughter Olivia, jumped off the roof of a Manhattan building, killing them both. Police pictured at the scene at W 53rd and 11th Avenue
‘She really regretted taking the pills because she didn’t know how addictive they were,’ said the woman. ‘She referred to herself as a “drug addict.”‘
The friend said that after Patchin started taking powerful medications for her depression, panic attacks and insomnia, including Klonopin, Trazadon and Clomipromine, she had begun having suicidal thoughts and spent a week in the hospital receiving mental health treatment in July.
Patchin believed the pills were having an adverse effect on her, so she had begun reducing the dosages in consultation with her doctor, according to the friend.
When asked what may have prompted Patchin to take her life and that of her daughter on Sunday, the friend said that the ramifications of her divorce, which she herself had initiated, weighed heavily on her.
A family friend described the five-year-old Olivia as a kind girl who was beloved by her teachers
‘She had a lot of time to process her divorce during the quarantine,’ explained the friend, adding that the thought of having her daughter grow up without her father in her life was a cause for concern.
‘She must have felt that was the only thing that she could do,’ the friend said through tears, referring to Patchin’s suicide. ‘All that she wanted was to get better… she never wanted to hurt [Olivia].’
The friend said she first met Patchin in 2006 when the two of them arrived in New York as au pairs.
The friend added: ‘She has never been addicted to anything before (I’ve known her for 14 years) and would have never sought out to take addictive drugs had it not been prescribed to her. She led a healthy lifestyle, shopped at Farmer’s Market on Grand Army Plaza and exercised.’
The two women fell out of touch while Patchin was married, but reconnected after her separation.
‘She was a very happy person. People were drown to her,’ said the friend, describing Patchin as someone who made friends easily.
The friend characterized Olivia as a kind and caring girl who was loved by her teachers. She had just enrolled in a new school and was excited about starting dance lessons.
Cops responded to the scene after receiving a call about two females laying on the pavement and found them ‘unconscious and unresponsive with injuries consistent with a fall from an elevated height.’
Patchin and her five-year-old daughter were rushed to St Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital and died from their injuries, the New York Police Department shared with DailyMail.com.
Olivia had just enrolled in a new school and was excited about starting dance lessons
The woman did not live in the 12-story building but was visiting someone who did reside there, before she tragically jumped
‘No criminality is suspected at this time,’ Sergeant Edward Riley said. The investigation is ongoing.
Patchin’s friend said they would often visit their mutual friend who lives in Hell’s Kitchen and go up to the roof to enjoy the sweeping views.
On Sunday afternoon, Patchin took an Uber with Olivia, which was unusual, and arrived at the apartment on West 53rd Street ahead of her best friend, who texted her that she was running late.
The friend told DailyMail.com that over the past two weeks, Patchin seemed to be getting better, but she had stopped sharing her mental health concerns with her.
‘She had a great time over Christmas,’ said the friend. ‘She was planning for the future. She was excited.’
According to the friend, it was Patchin who suggested that they meet up on Sunday at their friend’s apartment in Manhattan, where she had gotten into the habit of going up to the roof, most recently by herself.
‘It looked like she did have an intention [to kill herself],’ said the friend.
Speaking to the New York Post, Patchin’s mother, Anna, said that her daughter was prescribed three different medications for her depression.
But in recent months, Patchin began reducing her dosages by splitting the pills in an effort to wean herself off of the antidepressants.
‘I said to her, “Oksana, February, March, you will be finished,”’ the mother recounted to the paper.
One of the medications was a sleep aid that Patchin had been taking since the summer, when she and her husband separated.
Anna told the Post that nothing seemed amiss in the hours leading up to the tragedy.
She said Patchin walked her dog in the morning, had breakfast with Olivia, and in the afternoon drove from their apartment in Brooklyn to Manhattan to see a friend on the eve of the woman’s birthday on Monday.
The friend who lives in the building on West 53rd Street told Anna that during the visit, Olivia asked Patchin to take her to the roof, which they often did.
According to police sources cited by the New York Post, Patchin had asked the friend for her key card to access the rooftop so that Olivia could admire the view.
Once on the roof, security cameras reportedly captured the mother pacing around for some time, then climbing over a safety gate with her child in her arms and leaping to their deaths.
Anna insisted that Patchin, who was her only child, was ‘not sad’ when she last saw her. Just days earlier, she had enrolled Olivia in a Catholic school and took her to Brighton Beach in Brooklyn for dance lessons, which the girl enjoyed.
Police said Patchin had asked a friend who lives in the building on West 53rd Street for her key card to access the roof, claiming she wanted to show her daughter the view. While there, she scooped up the girl, climbed over the safety gate and jumped
Patchin and her husband (right) reportedly divorced last summer and she had been living with her mother in Brooklyn
Patrick Patchin wrote in a comment on Facebook on Monday that he feels ‘completely lost’
After the jump, one tenant came out of the building in tears and told reporters on the scene that the woman had been ‘very distraught.’
‘It really shook me up that it happened. It’s very, very disturbing,’ one tenant said to the New York Post.
Police said Patchin and her husband split up last summer, and the woman had been living with her mother in the Prospect Park section of Brooklyn.
‘She led a healthy lifestyle, shopped at Farmer’s Market on Grand Army Plaza, exercised,’ wrote Patchin’s friend in an email to DailyMail.com. ‘She was an accountant, with a CPA certification, and has built a successful career. She loved her job, I actually found unusual how excited she was about her work before her anxiety and trouble sleeping began this late spring.
‘She loved her daughter more than anything. I cannot imagine how confused her mind had to be to do what she did.’
No suicide note has been recovered, but police seized pill bottles from Patchin’s apartment in Brooklyn.
Cops responded to the scene after receiving a call about two females laying on the pavement and found them ‘unconscious and unresponsive with injuries consistent with a fall from an elevated height’
Patchin, who jumped, is believed to have lived in Prospect Heights and it’s not immediately known who she was visiting. Sources say she was ‘very distraught’
According to Patchin’s social media posts, she was a native of Kirovohrad, Ukraine, who earned a Bachelor’s degree in accounting from Baruch College in 2013 and worked for the past two years as a financial officer at CIC, a French banking company.
A Twitter account associated with Patchin has been dormant for more than five years, but in her final tweet from November 2015, she shared a link to a GoFundMe account, asking for donations for ‘Baby Olivia’s medical bills.’
The online fundraiser is not longer active, and it is unclear what medical condition Patchin’s daughter might have had.
A neighbor told New York Daily News that Olivia was born prematurely, but was doing well.
A man believed to be Patchin’s ex-husband, Patrick, shared a link to a news story about her and Olivia’s deaths on his Facebook page, and wrote in the comments section: ‘I am completely lost.’
Call the toll-free 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889)