Coroner finds alcohol, marijuana traces in system of student who died at Mirror Lake jump

Austin Singletary. Courtesy of OSU

Austin Singletary. Courtesy of OSU

The Ohio State student who died after sustaining injuries during the annual Mirror Lake jump tradition had traces of alcohol and marijuana in his system, according to an autopsy report obtained Tuesday from the Franklin County Coroner’s Office.

Austin Singletary, a third-year in human nutrition from Bellbrook, Ohio, died the morning of Nov. 25 as a result of blunt force injuries to the head and neck from diving into shallow water, the release stated. The manner of death is considered accidental.

The report reads that his antemortem blood, which is blood before death, had 0.18 blood alcohol content, as well as 7.3 nanograms per milliliter of Delta-9-THC, which is a psychoactive substance in marijuana, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The .18 blood alcohol content is more than twice the level considered too intoxicated to drive in Ohio.

“In terms of marijuana, it is illegal here in Ohio so any level is above legal limit,” said Franklin County Coroner Anahi Ortiz in an email. She added that she could not comment on Singletary’s sobriety.

Max Singletary, Austin Singletary’s father, declined to comment directly about the release of the coroner’s report, but he said he hopes the coverage of the incident helps encourage witnesses to share any information they might have.

“If there is anyone that has any information regarding the events of that night, would they please just get in contact with the university police,” he said.

Paramedics responded to a medical emergency at Mirror Lake on Nov. 25 at 12:20 a.m. Austin Singletary was shortly thereafter taken to the Wexner Medical Center, where he died about six hours later, according to the coroner’s report.

Jumping in Mirror Lake the week before the OSU football game against Michigan is a fan tradition. 2015 was the third year of increased regulation at the event. Students who attended — whether jumping or watching — were required to wear wristbands for admittance to the fenced-in lake area, and certain gates were designated as entrances and exits.

In a statement issued on Nov. 25, University President Michael Drake said OSU leadership was in strong agreement that they would work with the campus community to end the Mirror Lake Jump tradition.

This decision was echoed by OSU’s Undergraduate Student Government General Assembly when it voted in support of ending the tradition with 35 aye, 6 nay and 6 abstained votes during a Dec. 2 meeting.

University spokesman Chris Davey expressed condolences for those impacted by Austin Singletary’s death in an emailed statement on Tuesday.

“The Ohio State community continues to mourn the tragic loss of our young Buckeye, as we learn more information about this accident,” Davey said.