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Autopsy: Brendan Santo drowned, though alcohol was a factor in his death

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Posted at 4:10 PM, Mar 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-14 16:13:40-04

EAST LANSING, Mich. — Brendan Santo, the 18-year-old who disappeared from Michigan State University's campus in late October and whose body was found months later in the Red Cedar River, died from drowning, according to an autopsy conducted by the Ingham County Medical Examiner's Office.

The autopsy listed "acute ethanol intoxication" - that is, being drunk from alcohol - as a contributing factor in his death.

The Grand Valley State University student was last seen alive leaving Yakeley Hall around midnight on Oct. 29, the night before the MSU-Michigan football game. In the months that followed, multiple police agencies and hundreds of volunteers searched the campus for signs of him.

On Jan. 21, a private investigator working for the Santo family notified MSU police that, while reviewing underwater video of the river, he had found something completely submerged at a logjam about a mile and a half downstream from where Santo was last seen.

Santo's body was recovered later that day.

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Mikayla Temple

Mikayla Temple

1:39 PM, Jan 05, 2021

Your Neighborhood Reporter

Mikayla Temple

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