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Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014

Hospitalization investigation ongoing

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

(Photo)
Mike Heaton
Officials confirmed Tuesday they are seriously investigating details surrounding the hospitalization of an unidentified Northview High School student last week.

"We're dealing with a lot of unknowns right now," Clay County Sheriff Mike Heaton told The Brazil Times about the investigation that started after the student's family officially reported the incident early Friday.

Officials are paying special attention to a timeline of the student's activities during Thursday.

Although information about the incident was released when the student was put on a local church's prayer chain, Heaton confirmed the student's name would not be released to media to protect the integrity of the department's investigation.

Apparently the incident started Thursday, when the student became ill and collapsed after returning home from school. Transported to an undisclosed hospital, blood and urine samples were taken from the student for testing.

The student was released from medical treatment Monday and is expected to return to school some time soon.

Officials confirmed the initial toxicology results have come back negative, however, in an effort to determine if "any illegal substance was slipped to him," the samples have been sent to another outside medical facility for further testing.

"Right now, we're waiting on the results of the toxicology tests," Heaton said. "We're focusing on what caused the illness while continuing to gather information for our investigation. Until we know that, we're in a holding pattern."

The sheriff's department's investigators are not the only ones anxiously waiting. Members of Northview High School administrative staff and the Clay Community School Corporation are also awaiting the results as they perform their own investigation.

According to Northview High School Principal Tim Rayle, the student became ill Thursday evening around 6 p.m., (Sept. 17).

Although information has surfaced the student was at band practice when they took ill, Rayle or other administrative staff are unable to comment on due to the confidentiality issues of student's records.

Allegations surfaced during the early stages of the investigation by the family that the student might have allegedly had a drink "spiked" during breakfast time in the NHS cafeteria, which takes place from approximately 7:45-8:25 a.m. NHS administrative staff reviewed the cafeteria video, then, according to Supt. Dan Schroeder, the video was given to law enforcement for their investigation.

(Photo)
Tim Rayle
Schroeder and Rayle told The Brazil Times Tuesday they were not made aware of the allegation until between 8:30-9 a.m., Monday. Both Rayle and Schroeder are joined with law enforcement officials in taking the allegations seriously and the school corporation immediately began its own investigation into the incident.

"We have reviewed video of the cafeteria frame by frame," Rayle said. "No evidence was found to support the allegation."

Schroeder added Rayle is talking with students in an effort to learn any information about the incident to help both investigations.

With approximately 1,100-1,200 students at Northview, Schroeder said conflicts between students do happen.

"You don't want to say these types of things happen, but they do," Schroeder said. "If (it is determined) there is a substance and this involves numerous students, then we want to make sure they are punished for their actions."

However, when asked about the safety of students at the school, Schroeder had a positive outlook and said, "I still believe Northview is a very safe school."