MOSCOW -- Moscow police say a University of Idaho senior died of respiratory arrest, apparently due to alcohol poisoning after a night of drinking to celebrate his 21st birthday.
Emergency personnel responded to a report of an unconscious man at Sigma Nu fraternity at 2:42 a.m. Tuesday. They located Benjamin Harris of Burley on the third floor and began CPR. He was pronounced dead on arrival at Gritman Medical Center.
Assistant Police Chief David Duke says Harris may have had as many as 15 shots in two-and-a-half hours as he celebrated his birthday Monday night.
A preliminary investigation indicated Harris died of respiratory arrest caused by alcohol poisoning. The cause of death will be determined by the medical examiner after review of the toxicology reports.
The University of Idaho issued a statement today:
The University of Idaho community is saddened by the death of Benjamin Harris. He was a senior in architecture and interior design from Burley, Idaho. Ben -- a member of Sigma Nu fraternity -- enriched the lives of those around him, and his gift for creativity in design held great promise for the future. The university is working closely with the students who are on campus this summer, and with Sigma Nu chapter alumni, to provide counseling and support services at this time. We extend our heartfelt sympathy to his family and friends.