Western Student Dies

Investigators are trying to figure out why a Western Kentucky freshman plunged to his death from his dorm window.

The university says 18-year-old Dylan Prott of Louisville leapt from his window on the 20th floor of Pearce-Ford Tower.

The incident happened just after midnight last night.

So many students gathered around to see what happened that police had to bring in extra officers to handle crowd control.

The school says he disabled the safety bar that's designed to keep his window from opening more than a few inches.

"There's a bar on the window to prevent the window from being opened fully, but according to preliminary reports Dylan had disabled that safety bar and taken it off," said Bob Edwards, the Vice President of University Relations.

"The idea of the system is to allow some ventilation on nice days to be able to get some fresh air into the rooms and not have to rely on the air conditioning or the heating unit," said Edwards.

However students say with a little knowledge and a few tools, the bar can be disabled.

"I know people take them off; if you have the right tools you can take them off," said Ashley Dickinson, a sophomore at Western.

Those with the university say the bars are checked the first Tuesday of every month during safety check.

Dylan's room was checked on November 7, and the safety bar was in place.

"They check the windows to make sure they're OK, check to make sure in case there's a fire there's a pathway from your bed, so you can get out," said Michael Starling, a sophomore.

"If somebody's determined to remove these, there's not a whole lot that we can do to stop it other than check them periodically to make sure that they're connected and haven't been tampered with," said Edwards.

The university is currently looking into the circumstances surrounding Dylan's death and how a similar situation can be prevented.

"This is obviously very tragic and we're going to look into what happened and why and see what we can do to prevent something like this from happening in the future," said Edwards.

Prott's blood is currently being tested for drugs. The university says toxicology tests are expected to take 30 to 45 days.

Grief counselors are also available to any of the students who need them.


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