19-year-old Rachael Fiege, freshman at Indiana University, dies after falling down stairs at party
Police say they weren't called for hours
2:27 PM, Aug 26, 2013
4:03 PM, Aug 26, 2013
BLOOMINGTON, Ind. - An Indiana University official has confirmed that Rachael Fiege, who was critically injured at a party Friday morning, has died.
Vice President of University Relations Mark Land said that Fiege, a 19-year-old freshman from Zionsville, was taken off life support Saturday morning.
Police are investigating the incident, which happened near the football stadium.
Police said Fiege fell down a flight of stairs between 1 a.m. and 2 a.m., but police didn't receive a call until nearly 8 a.m.
"She was monitored by persons in the house on and off. At approximately 7:30 this morning, she was found to be unresponsive and they contacted our department," Chief Laury Flint said.
Neighbors couldn't believe that no one called for help for several hours after the girl fell.
When police arrived, they found Fiege unconscious and not breathing. Police administered first aid and medics took Fiege to the hospital in critical condition. She was pronounced dead early Saturday morning after being taken off life support.
Fiege had moved into a residence hall on campus earlier in the week, according to school officials. They said she planned to study pre-nursing.
Sarvesh Somisetty, a junior, said that people who throw parties need to take responsibility.
"Just be careful, especially when you're having parties like this and you know people who weren't necessarily invited come by, If you're the host of the party, make sure you're walking around making sure everyone is at least OK," Somisetty said.
Many students are not aware of Indiana's new lifeline law that provides protection for students who are afraid of underage drinking citations.
Stefanie Callimanis, also a junior, explained why some students are afraid to call police.
"We're just young, we're scared. It's hard because if we get in trouble like that, it could change the rest of our college experience, you'll be under watch," Callimanis said. "I think it would great if the police honestly would come educate us on it, let us know, have information sessions and say really this law is put in place for this exact reason to save lives."