NATIONAL NEWS

Spectator dies of ‘cardiac event’ after school game brawl

Apr 3, 2023, 8:46 AM

ALBURGH, Vt. (AP) — An autopsy has determined that a 60-year-old spectator who died after being involved in a brawl at a Vermont middle school basketball game in late January died of an acute cardiac event, state police said.

The investigation is ongoing, and police are working with county prosecutors to review the case and any potential charges for people involved in the fight, state police said Friday.

Russell Giroux, of Alburgh, died Jan. 31 at Northwestern Medical Center in St. Albans over two hours after he was involved in the altercation among multiple spectators during a seventh- and eighth-grade boys basketball game between Alburgh Community Education Center and St. Albans City School, police said. The medical examiner determined that the cause of death was an “acute cardiac event following altercation in an individual with coronary artery atherosclerosis,” state police said. The manner of death will be listed as undetermined, police said.

The fight had ended before troopers arrived, and many of the participants had left. Giroux sought medical attention, police said. He was taken by ambulance to the hospital.

After the brawl, school officials announced that spectators would not be allowed to attend home basketball games for the rest of the season at the Alburgh middle school.

Alburgh is a town of about 2,100 in northwestern Vermont. It is surrounded on three sides by Lake Champlain and the northern part of the community forms part of the border with Canada.

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