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WSU student dies from alcohol poisoning

Nov. 1, 2012 at 4:09 PM

PULLMAN, Wash., Nov. 1 (UPI) -- A Washington state college freshman died of acute alcohol poisoning and a family member says energy drinks contributed to his death.

Kenny Hummel, 18, of Lynwood, a freshman at Washington State University, was found unresponsive in his dorm room early Saturday. Tests showed Hummel had a blood alcohol content of 0.4 percent, which Whitman County Coroner Peter Martin said is "in the lethal range."

Friends said Hummel had consumed multiple 5-hour Energy drinks along with alcohol, The Seattle Times reported Wednesday. Hummel's aunt, Lea Ann Easton, said the energy drinks enabled her nephew to continue drinking when he otherwise "would have puked and passed out."

Martin didn't dispute the possibility and said he would check to see if toxicology reports could detect caffeine levels in the blood, but said he wasn't altering his finding following an autopsy that alcohol poisoning was the cause of death.

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