Jul 28, 2014
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Police Release More Details in Grant Death, Case Remains Open

A timeline for Grant's approximate whereabouts is revealed.

Police Release More Details in Grant Death, Case Remains Open

Saratoga Springs Police have completed an investigation of "active leads" in the death of 19-year-old Briarcliff Manor resident Alexander Grant, the department announced today.

Grant disappeared after attending a party during spring break in March and was found a few days later.

Police have released additional details surrounding the teenager's death, while the Saratoga County District Attorney for small crimes will be offered to witnesses with further information about the mysterious events surrounding Grant's disappearance on Sunday, March 6.

Following an autopsy performed by Albany Medical Center, Grant's cause of death was listed as "asphyxia due to drowning with contributing factors of intoxiation and probably hypothermia."

At his time of death, Grant's blood alcohol content was 0.16.

"A low level of THC (marijuana) was also detected," police reported, while no .

According to police, the Boston College student arrived in Saratoga Springs prior to 8:30 p.m. on March 5, picked up a friend and arrived at Skidmore College, where he planned to stay with a friend on campus.

Police said "Grant and several others are drinking beer and tequila in one of the dorm rooms" prior to 10:28 p.m., when they took a bus from the campus to the downtown area. They then walked to a party at 146 Church St., where Grant was allegedly dancing with a female between 11 and 11:30 p.m.

Police said someone over the age of 21 purchased alcohol for the party, but do not know how the alcohol was obtained for the minors drinking in the Skidmore College dormitory.

"Two female Skidmore students are identified as having contact with Grant at the party, however, both report that Grant was only there for a short time before he went to another part of the house and they never saw him again," police said in a statement.

Police said they were notified of the party at approximately 11:50 p.m., "had a difficult time controlling the unruly crowd."

A friend of Grant sent approximately six text messages to him between 11:37 p.m. that night and noon on Sunday inquiring about his whereabouts.

Police broke up the party at approximately 12:30 a.m. and witnesses reported Grant had already left by that time.

"Surveillance video at the train station on Station Lane off of West Avenue in Saratoga Springs shows Alexander Grant walking to the front of the building from Station Lane at 11:31 p.m.," police reported. "He is alone, fully clothed and appears to be staggering as he walks."

Police stressed, "It is important to note that no one and no vehicles approach the train station for a considerable amount of time before or after Grant appears on the video," and said they do not know how or why Grant was at the station that night.

He was last seen on the video "heading north along the tracks towards the Church Street overpass," at 11:34 p.m. He appeared to be alone.

Grant was next seen on surveillance video at a medical office building at 3 Care Ln., where he is shown "kicking in a small 3x3 window at the entrance to the building."

At this time, it appeared he was wearing one sock, a long sleeve white shirt and shorts. Dirt is apparent on his back. He is also "bleeding considerably."

Police said Grant did not leave the lobby of the building and did not attempt to break into any offices, though did seem "disoriented and/or intoxicated," as he "is stumbling into the walls and repeatedly loses his balance."

Grant left the building at 2:11 a.m. Police were notified of the break-in at 12:36 p.m. and any blood trail evidence would have been washed away by rain at that time. However, Grant's Boston College ID was recovered by a building employee.

Grant was reported missing by two students at 4:47 p.m. on Sunday evening and is identified as the person breaking into the building.

As a search begins along the railroad tracks, a team discovers Grant's pants and wallet on top of a snow bank between the medical building on Care Lane and railroad tracks. A single set of footprints are also seen along the tracks, heading north.

After a storm stalled Sunday's search, an "intensive search with additional manpower" picked up the next day at approximately 10:30 a.m. until dusk.

The next day, March 8, a search started at 9:45 a.m. and Grant's body was found by Saratoga Springs Fire Department personnel at 10:43 a.m. He was found submerged in Putnam Creek "under an ice shelf in about four feet of water approximately 30 yars from where the last set of footprints were seen during the search on the night of the 6th."

Though he was injured, police believe injuries were the result of "stumbling through the woods," rather than from assault.

"The known facts of the case tend to support the conclusion made regarding the cause of death," police reported. "Alexander Grant apparently became lost and disoriented due to his level of intoxication, and suffering from the effects of hypothermia, tragically fell into the Putnam Creek and was unable to pull himself to safety."

Police further reiterated, they "do not suspect foul play" in the death. However, attempts to interview other partygoers of 146 Church St. have been unsuccessful, according to police.

"With the exception of one of the occupants, who police spoke with last week, all have declined written requests by police to their attorneys to make them available for interviews. The friend that Alexander Grant had come to visit and planned to stay with while in Saratoga Springs has also decided not to speak with police any further and has obtained legal counsel," police said.

Grant's shoes and cell phone have not been recovered, though police said several voicemails and text messages were received, but never answered, between 11:37 p.m. on Saturday and noon on Sunday.

"At this point the Saratoga Springs Police have no more active leads," according to a statement. "However the case will remain open in the event that someone comes forward with information about the critical time period between when Grant leaves the party and he arrives at the train station."

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