One Isla Vista resident had a near death experience last Thursday when he was admitted to the Goleta Valley Cottage Hospital with acute alcohol poisoning as a result of what Isla Vista Foot Patrol Officers suspect may have been a hazing incident.
According to IVFP Sgt. Craig Bonner, the 21-year-old I.V. resident lost consciousness as a result of drinking too many shots of hard alcohol in what appears to have been a hazing ritual. Santa Barbara County Sheriff Dept. spokesman Sgt. Erik Raney said officers are not sure whether the group has any ties to the university, or if it is even a fraternity.
However, the president of the local organization rumored to have been involved in the incident said he would not speak on the record until the IVFP’s investigation is complete.
As of Friday, no criminal hazing charges had been filed in connection with the incident, Raney said.
“We’re still not sure if there’s even a fraternity involved in this thing, or if they were hazing, or what they were hazing for,” Raney said.
Bonner said officers began an investigation of the circumstances under which the man was drinking on Thursday night, and are continuing to investigate the incident because of what they discovered.
“What eventually came to light appeared to be some form of hazing incidence in which shots of hard liquor were administered at [the intoxicated man’s] request,” Bonner said.
Bonner said that friends of the man drove him to the hospital after he passed out at a residence on the 6700 block of Sabado Tarde Road. He said the man was unresponsive when he was admitted to the hospital.
“The subject had an extremely high blood alcohol content, was unresponsive and in dire condition,” Bonner said.
Officers from the Foot Patrol were informed that, as of 1:30 a.m. on Friday, the resident had improved and was no longer in immediate danger of dying. Bonner said officers interviewed the resident’s friends and witnesses to determine what he had doing before he was admitted to the hospital.