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Police: Foul Play Not Suspected in Death of Wisconsin College Student

Authorities in Wisconsin are investigating the death of a Wisconsin college student whose body was found Monday in a food elevator at a bar and grill.

Police responded to a 911 call at the WingDam Saloon and Grill in Fountain City at about 8 p.m. Monday and discovered the body of 21-year-old Brooke Baures, a senior at Winona State University, in the food elevator connected to the kitchen. She was an employee at the restaurant.


Jason Mork, the only police officer in the small, 859-person city, said the dumbwaiter’s opening is about 3 feet by 3 feet, Fox 9 reported. The Winona Daily News reported that the elevator is not intended for employees to enter.

“I highly doubt [Baures] was using [the elevator] to move herself,” Mork told Fox 9. He added that at this point he does not believe foul play was involved in Baures’ death.

The restaurant closed Tuesday night.

There is a multi-agency investigation into the popular college student’s death and officials would not speculate on the cause of death until an autopsy is performed.

According to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration, food elevator accidents inside restaurants are rare occurrences. According to the OSHA database, only two incidents, both fatal, have happened in the U.S. between 2003 and 2013.

Baures, who was studying social work, was remembered as a “selfless teammate”.

“She was one of those kids who touched a lot of people and who was very well liked,” Eric Schoh, the university’s athletic director, told the paper. “She was a big part of the gymnastics team, but also the athletic department.”

Winona State University is planning a candlelight vigil for Baures on Wednesday night. The vigil will take place at 8 p.m. at the alumni gazebo in the center of the Winona, Minnesota campus. The university says students, friends and others wishing to pay their respects to Baures are welcome to participate.

Police: Foul Play Not Suspected in Death of Wisconsin College Student

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