Student dies after arrest in Whistler

Authorities are investigating the death of a University of British Columbia student who perished suddenly two days after being arrested for being drunk in public in Whistler.

The student, who was arrested on Tuesday (Feb. 23) just after 5 p.m., fell several times after being lodged in Whistler RCMP cells, Vancouver Police spokesman Sgt. Peter Thiessen said in a statement issued on Friday (Feb. 26).

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The man, identified by The Province this week as Silas Rogers, 20, was released on Wednesday (Feb. 24) at around 3:30 a.m. and returned to Vancouver. He was found unconscious in his UBC residence early Thursday (Feb. 25) and was rushed to hospital, where he died a short while later, Thiessen said.

Vancouver Police are investigating whether the falls that occurred while he was in police custody had anything to do with the man's sudden death. RCMP officials asked Vancouver Police to investigate, the statement said.

Games period relatively quiet

While Whistler-Pemberton RCMP answered almost double the number of calls for service during the 17-day Olympic period as compared to the same time frame in 2009, the vast majority of the activity was for those either found or reported to be drunk in public, RCMP Staff Sgt. Steve LeClair said on Tuesday (March 2).

In the period of Feb. 12 to 28, 2010, local police answered 832 complaints. During the same period in 2009, 420 calls came in.

"During the Games time frame, we had six to 10 intoxicated people in jail, whereas on a regular weekday we might not have anybody," LeClair said.

There was, however, a notable dearth of more serious offences, which LeClair attributed to the fact that approximately three times more police officers were on duty than during normal periods.

"Although we had a lot of calls for service, it was remarkably crime-free," he said.

"At any given time, the actual urban-domain Whistler detachment resources were essentially tripled, and of course there were a lot of other police in town, including those doing stationary traffic patrols."

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