| 03.18.2018

Moscow police: Wiederrick’s BAC as high as .3 percent


Toxicology reports show University of Idaho freshman Joseph Wiederrick had a blood alcohol content of .17 percent at the time of his death, and could have been as high as .3 percent when he left Sigma Alpha Epsilon Fraternity Jan. 20, Moscow Chief of Police David Duke said.
Duke said Wiederrick died of hypothermia between 5-7 a.m. Jan. 20 under a bridge near Paradise Creek, and his BAC was .17 percent. The average rate at which the body metabolizes alcohol is .02 percent, Duke said, which means Wiederrick’s BAC was likely between .25-.3 percent when he left SAE around midnight.
Wiederrick’s toxicology report was also positive for marijuana, Duke said.
Duke said Dakota Vegwert, a UI freshman, allegedly provided Wiederrick with alcohol, and has been issued a citation for serving alcohol to a minor. Vegwert will appear at the Latah County Courthouse Feb. 27.
UI President M. Duane Nellis announced the formation of two task forces Thursday to assess substance abuse and the university’s relationship with its Greek system. Duke said the Moscow Police Department will assist the university task forces by providing a representative to help assess college students’ risk-taking behavior and offer insight.
Duke said he thinks the university’s task forces are needed.
“I believe we need to provide more education to incoming students about alcohol use because it is a drug and overdosing can be lethal,” Duke said.
Lt. Paul Kwiatkowski participates in a Moscow community board that meets monthly to discuss alcohol-related incidents. Kwiatkowski said several organizations are represented on the board, including Gritman Medical Center, the Latah County Prosecutor’s office, a UI Counseling and Testing Center staff member and several health agencies.
Duke said the board’s discussions and findings related to alcohol abuse in the community may be helpful in UI’s current task force investigations.
Elisa Eiguren can be reached at arg-news@uidaho.edu

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