LSU Student Dies with BAC .588

LSU Frat Dies With BAC of .588

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After receiving the following email message I decided to look further
into the death of Benjamin Wynne, a college student at LSU during bid
week with Sigma Alpha Epsilon. (Here are two press releases from Sigma
Alpha Epsilon). First Press Release – 8/27 and Second Press Release –
8/28.

What follows is the email message from one of his brothers and
articles from various newspapers and news services.

Ed
www.dui.com

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Date: Tue, 26 Aug 1997 20:46:02 -0400 (EDT)
To: edwardo@well.com
Subject: Drunkedness

To whom it may concern:

I am a member of a fraternity at Louisiana State University, and
recently there was an alcohol related death to another fraternity member
on pledge day. His BAC was .588. My question is how many beers were
forced down this persons throat in order to reach this level. This is a
serious question and I will look forward to your answer soon. Thank
you.

Sincerely,

Curious

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Student Found Dead at LSU Frat Party

08/26 1605

BATON ROUGE, La., Aug. 26 (UPI S) — An overnight fraternity party
turned tragic (Tuesday) near the Louisiana State University campus.
Paramedics summoned to the house found one student dead of cardiac arrest
and four other party-goers so drunk they required hospital treatment.

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LSU Frat Pledge Dies of Alcohol Abuse

BATON ROUGE, La., Aug. 27 (UPI) — Only days after Louisiana State
University was named to the Top 10 Party School list, a 20-year-old
fraternity pledge died from acute alcohol intoxication.

Sigma Alpha Epsilon pledge Benjamin Wynne had a blood alcohol level of
.588 percent — well above the .10 percent level to be considered drunk
— when he was taken to Baton Rouge Medical Center early Tuesday morning.
Authorities believe Wynne may have consumed 25 to 30 drinks in one hour
during a binge drinking fest.

Emergency Medical Services personnel arrived at the SAE house shortly
after midnight to find two dozen fraternity members and pledges in
various stages of unconsciousness. Wynne and three others were
hospitalized, including 21-year-old Donald Hunt of Mandeville who remains
in guarded condition. Authorities say there was no evidence of drinking
at the frat house, but they believe Wynne went to a private party and an
LSU-area bar before his death.

A favorite college nightspot, Murphy’s Bar, was selling “Three Wise
Men” by the pitcher. The drink is a combination of Bacardi 151 rum,
Jagermeister liqueur and Crown Royal whiskey.

The faternity, meanwhile, has been suspended by SAE fraternity
headquarters while an investigation is completed. Students can live in
the SAE house, but they may not conduct fraternity activities.

Copyright 1997 by United Press International.
All rights reserved. — Copyright 1997

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Local student dies in LSU fraternity tragedy

By Chad A. Kirtland / The News Banner / August 26, 1997

A Louisiana State University student from the Mandeville area died
early Tuesday morning in a Baton Rouge hospital after a fraternity
celebration turned into a tragedy.

Benjamin Wynne, 20, was pronounced dead shortly after 1 a.m. at Baton
Rouge General Medical Center. The cause of death had not been officially
determined at press time, but alcohol abuse is believed to be
responsible.

Emergency workers responded to a call at the Sigma Alpha Epsilon
fraternity house on the LSU campus at about midnight. According to LSU
Chancellor William Jenkins, technicians from Baton Rouge Emergency
Medical Service found about two dozen students ill or passed out.

Four students were taken to area hospitals for treatment. Wynne and
Donald Hunt, 20, of Mandeville, were taken to Baton Rouge General. Wynne,
a former Mandeville High School football standout, was pronounced dead
shortly after 1 a.m.

Hunt was listed in critical, but guarded condition early Tuesday, but
had been upgraded to “improving” by Tuesday afternoon.

Two other students were brought to Our Lady of the Lake hospital, but
were discharged Tuesday morning.

“We are in the process of trying to figure out what happened, but the
assumption is alcohol abuse,” said LSU Dean of Students, Tom Risch. “We
have confirmed that they were drinking heavily.”

Results from Wynne’s autopsy were not available at press time.

Monday was “Bid Day” for LSU fraternities, wherein fraternities bid
for new pledges.

Risch said a celebration began at 5 p.m. Later in the day, fraternity
members went off campus to continue the festivities.

The SAE brothers returned to the fraternity house around 9 p.m.
Emergency medical crews were called around midnight when some brothers
became concerned over Wynne’s condition.

A representative of the fraternity had no comment on the incident
Tuesday afternoon.

“It’s a tragedy for us,” said Chancellor Jenkins. “We are dealing with
a terrible situation here on our campus.”

Wynne was a transfer student from Southeastern Louisiana University in
Hammond.

According to Mandeville High School Athletic Director Skip Curtis,
Wynne was a star defensive player in high school and was a former
All-District linebacker.

Jenkins said the university has a fairly strict alcohol abuse policy
on campus. “The frustration is that once students leave the campus we
have no control over their behavior,” he added.

Jenkins said several agencies are investigating the incident,
including the Baton Rouge Police Department, the Dean of Students and the
fraternity.

“When we’re in possession of all the facts, we will proceed from
there,” said Jenkins. “I suspect there will be repercussions (for the
fraternity.)”

But he said the important thing now is to support those impacted by
the loss. “We must support the family, the fraternity brothers and our
entire campus community through the next few weeks as we recover from
this tragedy.”

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Tamnet is a joint project of The News Banner and the Slidell
Sentry-News.
Copyright ©1997, Wick Communications, Inc.
Internet services provided by Neosoft.

BATON ROUGE — State alcohol control officials have announced they
will begin to conduct sting operations around the state to catch
violators of Louisiana alcohol laws. Enforcement officers will set up
stings using students and other young people. They will not only target
bars and convenience stores, but will conduct raids of areas where
students are gathered to find underage drinkers. Both anyone who sells
alcohol to a person under 21 or procures it for them and the underage
drinker who obtains it can be fined and get up to six months in jail. The
crackdown follows the alcohol related death this week of 20-year-old LSU
student Ben Wynne.

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BATON ROUGE– The Louisiana Coalition to Prevent Underage Drinking has
called for a candlelight vigil tonight outside of the closed Baton Rouge
bar where drinking binge victim Ben Wynne partied with his friends Monday
night. The group says it will hold an alcohol awareness vigil outside
Murphy’s bar where students had celebrated being chosen by fraternities.
Early Tuesday, Wynne died of acute alcohol poisoning. The investigation
into his death continues and the bar remains closed voluntarily.
Officials with Sigma Alpha Epsilon, which had chosen Wynne on Monday to
be a member, said they only recently had a national symposium of all
S-A-E chapter presidents at which warnings went out about the dangers of
binge drinking. Ben Wynne was buried yesterday in New Orleans.

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08/28 1154 UPI Louisiana Second News Briefs

= (UNDATED) – The American Medical Association says the
alcohol-related death of a 20-year-old Louisiana State University student
points up the need for new initiatives to address the problem of binge
drinking on college campuses. The AMA is leading a national effort to
change the environmental factors that encourage excessive drinking.

Meanwhile, new enforcement procedures around college campuses are
expected to begin this week, with Louisiana getting national attention by
the death of Ben Wynne of Mandeville. He died Tuesday from a round of
fraternity drinking. Investigators say L-S-U’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon
fraternity held a private party at Murphy’s bar before pledge Benjamin
Wynne died.

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AMA aims to curb binge drinking

CHICAGO, Aug. 28 (UPI) — The American Medical Association says the
alcohol-related death of a 20-year-old Louisiana State University student
hammers home the need for initiatives to address the problem of binge
drinking on college campuses. The AMA is leading a national effort to
change the environmental factors that encourage excessive drinking.

A 1993 Harvard University survey says more than half the students in
one-third of U.S. college campuses are binge drinkers. The AMA says,
“This is not surprising given the barrage of alcohol advertising and
promotions aimed at young people.”

The AMA says that by the age of 18, the average teenager has seen more
than 100,000 beer commercials. One survey shows 73 percent of nine to
11-year-olds recognized the Budweiser frog second only to Bugs Bunny.

LSU student Benjamin Wynne had a blood alcohol level of .588 percent
— well above the .10 percent level to be considered drunk — when he was
taken to Baton Rouge Medical Center, where he died Tuesday. Authorities
believe Wynne may have consumed 25 to 30 drinks in one hour during a
binge drinking fest.

The AMA is working with six U.S universities and their surrounding
communities to curb binge drinking by changing norms, attitudes, policies
and practices affecting drinking on and off campus. The program, “Matter
of Degree,” is funded by an $11 million grant from the Robert Wood
Johnson Foundation. —

Copyright 1997 by United Press International.
All rights reserved. — Copyright 1997

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UPI Louisiana First News Briefs

(BATON ROUGE) – The L-S-U Baton Rouge campus is in mourning today
after a fraternity party turned tragic for a 20-year-old Mandeville
youth. Students drinking at a favorite hangout were celebrating bid day,
the day fraternities name the new members they’ve chosen. The group began
to suffer the effects of the binge drinking and returned to the Sigma
Alpha Epsilon House. Some people passed out and slept it off, but
Benjamin Wynne died of alcohol-induced cardiac arrest or alcohol
poisoning.

Paramedics summoned to the scene found Wynne and more than a dozen
others passed out. Four people were transported to a hospital and one was
admitted for observation. Doctors tried but were unable to save Wynne
whose blood-alcohol was six times the legal limit.

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