On Friday, Feb. 15, the Big Rapids Department of Public Safety was called at 7:48 a.m. to respond to an individual found in a snow bank.
The subject was determined to be 18-year-old Ferris freshman graphic design student Nicholas Suttles. The first responders found him to be extremely hypothermic and had an irregular heart beat. It is believed he was there since 3 a.m. without a coat on.
Torch Sports Editor and senior biotechnology major Tyler Shelton encountered the scene on his way to his 8 a.m. class.
According to Shelton, the victim, clothed in a T-shirt, jeans and shoes, was partially buried in the snow.
Three male students, also on their way to class, found the victim first and called the police.
“The body was motionless,” Shelton said. “He was not breathing and was unresponsive. He was discolored. His body was frozen, and that’s why it appeared he was dead. When EMS arrived, they determined that he had no pulse.”
Initial treatment took place at Mecosta County Medical Center where Suttles was stabilized. He was then sent via Aero Med to Grand Rapids for further treatment. Suttles remains in critical condition.
Alcohol is considered to be a factor, and a residence is under investigation for the gathering at which Suttles consumed the alcohol. Initial investigation has found Suttles brought alcohol to the party himself and consumed a large quantity. Charges are expected to be filed related to this incidence for the individuals who allowed the under-aged Suttles to consume alcohol under the Nuisance Party Ordinance.
As of Tuesday, Feb. 19, he is listed in critical condition at a Grand Rapids hospital. More updates will soon follow.