Kovacs died of alcohol poisoning, prosecutors say
Caitlyn Kovacs, the 19-year-old School of Environmental and Biological Sciences sophomore who died in September, died due to alcohol poisoning, according to a press release from the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office.
Kovacs, whose friends took her to Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital at 3:19 a.m. on the morning of Sept. 21, was pronounced dead after attending a “small gathering” at the Delta Kappa Epsilon Fraternity, according to a previous article in The Daily Targum.
The cause of death was determined following the completion of toxicology tests, according to the press release. The investigation remains acting and continuing.
Tammy Mehman, a School of Arts and Sciences sophomore who was one of Kovacs’ best friends, stressed the importance of friends looking out for each other.
“Obviously, alcohol can be dangerous to the point where it’s fatal, so just always look out for people around you and be safe,” Mehman said in via social media. “Even if you don’t know someone, it’s important to make sure they’re okay and check up on them before something happens, and it’s too late.”
This could have happened to anyone, Mehman said, and no one should have to go through what she or any of Kovacs’ close friends or family is going through.
E.J. Miranda, director of Media Relations at the University, said in an email that Rutgers takes alcohol and other substance abuse by students very seriously.
Rutgers takes a comprehensive approach to addressing the issues of alcohol and substance abuse, he said, specifying two Student Affairs programs: Health Outreach, Promotion and Education and the Alcohol and Other Drug Assistance Program.
“HOPE integrates academic and student life and uses curriculum, peer education, outreach and training to communicate information about health and wellness,” Miranda said.
ADAP provides counseling and intervention services, among others, for treatment and recovery support, he said. ADAP is a part of Counseling, (Alcohol and Other Drug Assistance Program) and Psychiatry Services.
Both programs focus on prevention and intervention, Miranda said.
Friends remember the animal science major, who wanted to one day open an animal daycare center, as sweet and selfless, according the The Daily Targum.
Anyone with any further information is asked to call Lt. Paul Fischer of the Rutgers University Police Department at (848) 932-8025, Detective Ken Abode of the New Brunswick Police Department at (732) 745-5217 or Detective Jeffrey Temple of the Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office at (732) 745-3373.