Canisters found in Claremont dorm after possible ‘huffing’ death

Police found empty nitrous oxide canisters in a Claremont McKenna dorm room where a student was thought to have fatally inhaled the gas, KTLA reported.

Claremont police received a call around 12:55 a.m. Friday about an unconscious male who had been inhaling nitrous oxide, Lt. Shelly Vanderveen told The Times. The practice is commonly known as “huffing.”

Officers, and later paramedics, responded to Berger Hall and attempted to revive the student before taking him to a hospital, Vanderveen said. He was pronounced dead at the hospital Friday morning.


Los Angeles County coroner’s office spokesman Ed Winter identified the student as 19-year-old Ali Wallace Mirza of Connecticut. Winter said Mirza’s official cause of death would be determined by an autopsy, which would take weeks to complete.

A school spokesman confirmed the death of a student on Friday, but did not immediately provide additional details.

KTLA said Ali Mirza’s family was in town to watch his older brother graduate from the college on Saturday.


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