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Posted on Sat, Jan 14, 2012 : 2:27 p.m.

U-M student injured in fall at Cancer Center is in good condition

By Lee Higgins

A University of Michigan student who was injured early Friday morning as he climbed down from a roof at the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center is in good condition, university police spokeswoman Diane Brown said this afternoon.

The 20-year-old student, who is from St. Clair Shores, climbed down from a second-floor roof at about 1:15 a.m., dropped 10 to 15 feet onto a glass overhang, slipped and struck his head on the overhang.

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Authorities broke a window to reach a University of Michigan student injured in a fall at the Cancer Center early Friday morning.

Chris Asadian |

He sustained head trauma and was in critical condition when authorities brought him into the building after breaking out a window. The student is currently being treated at University of Michigan Hospital.

Police continue to investigate why the student was climbing down the outside of the building that he likely accessed from an adjacent parking structure. He was not a patient and was alone.

The student attended an off-campus party prior to the accident, but police declined to say whether he had been drinking. Police said he accessed the second-floor roof from the third-floor roof and was on at least one level higher.

The student's name hasn't been released.

Lee Higgins is a reporter for He can be reached by phone at (734) 623-2527 and email at



Mon, Jan 16, 2012 : 3:27 p.m.

I'm also wondering why the name has not been released. Is there some special protection for students who break the law? Climbing on the outside of a building, without permission from the Cancer Center in this case, is illegal, whether or not alcohol was involved. If this had been someone other than a UM student, wouldn't we see the name in the article? AA dot com needs to provide an explanation why the name is not being released. How about a FOIA? This reminds me of the former EMU students who hacked into and stole personal information from EMU databases, and their photos were never published, even after they were no longer students, though names were released after the arrest. What's going on with that as well? AA dot com needs to provide an explanation on this one also.

Wolf's Bane

Mon, Jan 16, 2012 : 1:11 p.m.

Time to raise the academic standards for admission?


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 3:12 p.m.

If he was intoxicated, then he broke the law against public intoxication. If charged, I would expect his name to be released. If not charged, I would expect an explanation for that too.


Mon, Jan 16, 2012 : 3:22 p.m.

He broke the law whether or not he was intoxicated. Climbing on the outside of buildings without permission is illegal.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 2:23 p.m.

Why was there a party on the roof of the cancer center?


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 8:52 p.m.

Did you read the article? "The student attended an off-campus party prior to the accident" Key words being "off-campus" and "prior"...where did you get "a party on the roof" from?


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 2:21 p.m.

Follow-up!! I'm so excited! Thank you!


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 1:44 p.m.

This is a quote from the report on Fox 2 news last night at 10pm: &quot;Campus police say the student, whose name has not been released, was coming from an off-campus party. Alcohol is believed to be a factor in the accident.&quot; I often wonder how they seem to get more or different information than <a href="" rel='nofollow'></a>


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 6:27 a.m.

I wish the student full recovery what ever the reasons were for his climbing/falling. Very sad, and just 20 yrs. old.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 5:43 a.m.

I'm certainly glad the young man's condition has improved - the medical part, anyway. ;-) I still think it's odd (and may indicate something more sinister) that a 20 year-old's name is purposely not being revealed. He's an ADULT, and if he's a U of M student: then we can assume he's normal functioning and therefore not in need of any special protections. Also absent is the usual &quot;name withheld because&quot; clause.

Rod Johnson

Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 6:55 a.m.

Well, he hasn't been charged with a crime (yet). Isn't that the usual practice?


Sat, Jan 14, 2012 : 11:56 p.m.

To heartbreak et al, and to those of you who keep referring to this as an accident. This was not an accident. He was illegally climbing on the outside of a building and fell. He had no business being on that building under those circumstances. There are not a lot of other details available, but at 1:00 in the morning, he had no business to be climbing outside the Cancer Center building down from the roof, as the story states. I'm sure there will be a police report available and let's hope that AA dot com does a follow-up story.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 9:41 p.m.

This was an accident using the loose definition. But my point is that in such an injury, whether or not alcohol was involved is certainly a newsworthy topic. Especially since alcohol is known to be involved in many such lapses in otherwise good judgment.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 7:50 p.m.

@Anna, if he is found to have committed a crime, I agree with you that being charged with disorderly conduct (or drunk &amp; disorderly conduct, if appropriate) seems to fit the information as we know it. My original reply to @Sallyxyz was, as you know, only to point out that there certainly did appear to be an accident during this event, contrary to her assertion otherwise. We don't have all the facts here, and I fail to see the value in positing what happened, or likely happened, or what the approriate charges should be, or will be, or what the approriate punishment should be, or will be, until all the facts are in. For example, would your opinion change if he was found to have had an episode of paranoid schizophrenia and suffered a psychotic break which prompted his actions? What about if he has a history of sleepwalking, at times venturing outside his place of residence? How about if he recently began a medication, one of the rare side effects of which is sleepwalking, paranoia or other types of delusions? I agree that the above scenarios (and there are others) are unlikely, but they are not impossible. Until we know what happened (if we ever should), why speculate needlessly?


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 6:07 p.m.

DBH, you're right in saying that whether or not this student broke a law has yet to be released. I would, personally, think that the &quot;Disorderly persons&quot; law is appropriate in this case, and the $500 fine - if applied - should be be used to repair that window...


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 5:23 a.m.

@Anna, I never said otherwise. First of all, it has not yet been determined that he broke any law, as I have not seen any reports of even an arraignment on any charges, much less a conviction or a gulity plea, have you? Secondly, to make it simpler for you, consider that two things appear to have happened. #1, he made it out onto the roof of the Cancer Center. How or why currently is unknown by most, possibly even by the injured fellow (perhaps he was inebriated and can't now remember the circumstances or motivation, or perhaps he has posttraumatic amnesia). That action may (or may not) be ultimately determined to have been an illegal act. #2, he slipped and struck his head on the overhang. As I noted in my first reply to @Sallyxyz's blanket characterization of no accident having had occurred in the incident, unless she (or, I suppose, you) knows otherwise, such an action appears to have been an accident. Even if he is determined to have committed an illegality in getting onto the roof, that does not negate the possibility (and, from the story, more likely a probability) that the slip and injury was an accident.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 4:52 a.m.

DBH, he wouldn't have &quot;accidentally&quot; struck his head if he wasn't purposefully breaking the law.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 1:19 a.m.

&quot;...slipped and struck his head on the overhang.&quot; Unless you have knowledge that he did this on purpose (doubtful on both counts), I think this part of the scenario easily qualifies as an accident.


Sat, Jan 14, 2012 : 8:38 p.m.

How in the world is it not known or public about the alcohol use? These types of accidents are almost always associated with poor judgment stemming from alcohol and drunkenness. I can't comment on this because it is not known, but it is an important part of the story. Wish the student well, of course, and it is terrifying to know what can happen in one moment of anyone's day.


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 9:38 p.m.

Rod; I think the topic of injury related to alcohol abuse is a very important public health topic. First of all, it is &quot;use and abuse of alcohol&quot; and all that entails. It is a legal thing--is the student 21 years old or not, and if not, injury while using alcohol illegally is a big thing. Second: the university has risk here, and as a public school, the state and taxpayer have risks. Can the patient and family turn around and sue for unsafe buildings? Third; what liability does the student have for trespassing, alcohol or not? If there is drunkenness, that speaks to the whole lack of judgment thing. (as an example from a different topic, the majority of date rape occurs due to alcohol use, though certainly not all, where these people may act differently when sober).


Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 4:10 p.m.

Who pays for the broken window?

Rod Johnson

Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 6:53 a.m.

Really? Whether or not this person was drunk is something that every taxpayer in the state has the right to be informed about? What's the principle at work there? Is there anything that goes on in any public building that we don't have the right to demand answers about? I just think it's worth making a distinction between &quot;it is an important part of the story&quot; and &quot;I'm curious.&quot;

Fat Bill

Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 1:47 a.m.

Rod, as a citizen of this state, I'm a part owner of that building. I guess it could be somewhat my business.

Rod Johnson

Sun, Jan 15, 2012 : 1:37 a.m.

Why is it any of you or &quot;the public's&quot; business?


Sat, Jan 14, 2012 : 11:10 p.m.

I would assume HIPAA would stop the hospital from telling the press until the court gets it out them.