Police seek unanswered questions in Grant death

Posted by Rebecca Orbach

Saratoga Springs police are continuing to investigate the death of 19-year-old Alexander Grant, but as of press time on Wednesday no new information has surfaced.

On March 5, Grant attended a party at 146 Church St. and left at about 11:30 p.m. He was later identified on video surveillance breaking into a medical facility at 3 Care Lane at about 1:15 a.m. on March 6. He appeared to be intoxicated and was wearing only shorts, a T-shirt and one sock. On the morning of Tuesday March 8 Grant's body was found in a Saratoga Springs creek.

The investigation has been hindered by the apprehension of students involved to respond to police inquiries.

Police said the residents at 146 Church St., where Grant attended a party hours before his death, and the friends who Grant was visiting at Skidmore are refusing to cooperate with authorities.

The residents at 146 Church St. have all obtained lawyers and are not speaking to police.

"I can tell you that we're not getting a lot of cooperation from the residents who live on Church Street," Police Chief Christopher Cole said, according to The Post Star. "So we're having to pursue other avenues to determine where he was and what he might have been doing."

The Saratoga Springs Police Department broke up the party on Church Street shortly after midnight on March 6, and police now want to know what substances may have been provided to Grant while at the party.

An autopsy on Wednesday March 9 revealed that Grant drowned in the creek and was suffering from hypothermia before he died. "We are still waiting for a toxicology report, which is still probably several weeks from being released," Lieutenant Veitch of SSPD said.

Police say they are hopeful the toxicology report will determine whether any other substances contributed to Grant's death.

While residents of 146 Church St. have not commented, residents of 150 Church St., where another party was hosted the same night, said they do not believe Grant attended their party.

Residents at 150 Church Street said their party was a separate event from their neighbors' at 146 Church Street. They were celebrating the birthday of their 22-year-old friend and did not invite, nor provide alcohol to minors, they said.

They said neither they, nor their landlord, have been contacted or investigated by neither the police department nor the District Attorney with regard to the incident.

They expressed their sympathy for those who knew Grant and said this is a very sad and emotional time for the Skidmore, Boston College and Briarcliff communities.

Grant's parents, Ken and Deanna Grant, expressed their mourning through a letter to SSPD on March 14.

They began their letter by thanking SSPD for their dedication to finding their son.

"When we came up to Saratoga Springs on Sunday night, we were strangers to you, but during the time of our terrible ordeal, it was not lost to us that we were among a group of deeply caring and highly dedicated professionals. We are fully convinced that the group did everything in its power to help Alex and his family during the ordeal," the letter said.

Despite their gratitude, however, the Grant's say they have not received enough information to have full closure.

"In addition to being deeply distraught at the unfortunate span of critical hours that lapsed before rescue efforts could commence, we don't believe that we have been told everything that we need to know about this by Alex's friends who were present at the time of his disappearance," the letter said.

The Grants also said they are not seeking "vindication or retribution," and it is for this reason that they cannot understand why his friends will not share the information they have with them.

His family has set up the Alexander Maxwell Grant Foundation in his honor. "Its mission will be to set up scholarships for talented, underprivileged young people in the New York City area," they said.

As of press time on Wednesday March 23, neither the residents at 146 Church St., nor Saratoga County District Attorney James A. Murphy III could be reached for comment.

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