Monday, May 5, 2008

2 Athens students dead in apparent drowning

Now, I've no idea if these deaths are somehow related to the Smiley Face Drownings. In fact, there's apparently no evidence of outside involvement at this time, according to the police.

Perhaps it's just because the story has been in the news but when I heard of two Athens students found dead of an apparent drowning in their apartment, I thought of the Smiley Face Drownings.

From the Dispatch:

Police: No obvious signs of foul play in deaths of two college students
Monday, May 5, 2008 11:50 AM

The Columbus Dispatch
ATHENS, Ohio — There was no obvious sign of foul play in the deaths of a pair of college students in a off-campus apartment near Ohio University, police said today.

Christopher A. Theil and Kelly Armbruster were found dead around dawn Saturday at an apartment complex at 35 N. McKinley Ave.

Theil's mother discovered the bodies and called 911 at 6:18 a.m., said Capt. Tom Pyle of the Athens Police Department.

Theil's mother, whose name was not immediately available, told the dispatcher of a “possible drowning,” Pyle said.

Police are awaiting toxicology results before releasing possible causes of death.

She was from Powell in Delaware County and was a student at Ohio University. He was from Dublin and attended Hocking College. Both were 22 years old.

The Athens News has some more info:

911 tape: Man's mother found deceased couple in bathtub

By Jim Phillips
Athens NEWS Senior Writer
May 5, 2008

The tape of a call to Athens County 911 indicates that the mother of a Hocking College student, in town for Ohio University Mom’s Weekend, found her son and his OU student girlfriend dead in the bathtub of an apartment at Riverpark Towers early Saturday morning.

Athens Police Sunday evening identified the students as Christopher A. Theil, 22, of Athens, and Kelly P. Armbruster, 22, of Powell, a northwest suburb of Columbus. Theil was a Hocking College student and Armbruster a senior in OU's College of Business.

Authorities have been slow to release information on the deaths of the two students, saying they’re awaiting autopsy and toxicological reports on the bodies to complete their investigation. Police have said, however, that they don’t suspect any third-party involvement in the deaths.

The Athens County 911 system released the tape on Monday afternoon, providing the first substantive information about the incident.

On the tape, a woman caller tells a dispatcher, “I need help... I think my son and his girlfriend have drowned themselves.”

As one after another dispatcher tries to get information out of the clearly distraught woman, she explains that she is “just down here visiting for Moms Weekend,” and doesn’t even know for sure what apartment complex she is in. At first, she suggests it may be the Athens Garden Apartments, but later describes the facility, allowing a dispatcher to identify it correctly as Riverpark Towers, a student apartment complex near OU’s South Green.

“I pulled my son and his girlfriend out of the bathtub,” she tells a dispatcher, later explaining that they were both under water.

In response to questioning, she states that she has checked her son and his girlfriend for breathing and pulse, and found neither.

She goes on to give her son’s name, and say that he was a student at Hocking College.

It is not clear from the contents of the tape whether the two students shared the apartment, though some comments of the mother seem to suggest that she had been staying there that night and had awoken to find the pair dead in the tub. Other reports indicated that Armbruster lived in the apartment, located on the fourth floor of Riverpark’s Building 35.

The woman called 911 from a cell phone based in the 614 area code, which she told a dispatcher was her company cell phone.

So, if it was a suicide... damn. I'd hate to be the one that found the bodies, but of course it's worse that the mother of one of the dead found her son that way.

As to the Smiley Face Drownings... if such a gang exists, they apparently target young men. In this case, the dead are a man and a woman. That doesn't seem to fit the pattern.

While the police are apparently still waiting for more test results, the son's Mother seemed to think it was a double suicide. Perhaps there's some history there which led to her perception. Either way, it's something which caught my attention.

1 comment:

forestwander said...

Why was the mother of a Hocking College student at off campus housing for OU for mothers weekend when her son was not an OU student? If the girl was her daughter that would make sense because the girl goes to OU.