NY police probe death of top French academic

By REUTERS
April 4, 2012 07:20




A prominent French academic, Richard Descoings, was found dead naked in a New York hotel room on Tuesday afternoon and New York police opened an investigation into the circumstances of his death.

New York City Police said that the body of Descoings, 53, director of the prestigious Institute of Political Studies or "Sciences Po" in Paris and a member of France's Council of State, a government advisory body, was found in his room at the Michelangelo Hotel on 51st Street in Midtown Manhattan.

A police source initially categorized the circumstances of the incident as "suspicious," in part because Descoings' room was a jumble when investigators arrived.

But later on Tuesday, Paul Browne, chief spokesman for the New York Police Department, said investigators now believe the disorder in the room was caused by rescue workers while they tried to resuscitate the Frenchman.

Police believe there is no evidence of a struggle, Browne told Reuters. "We're awaiting the medical examiner's report as well as toxicology reports," he said.


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