State Police investigating death

Published 5:30 pm Wednesday, April 5, 2017

The Virginia State Police (VSP) Bureau of Criminal Investigation’s Appomattox Field Office is investigating the unattended death of Harrison Carter Cole at Hampden-Sydney College (H-SC), according to VSP Public Relations Director Corinne Geller.

She said that the VSP is investigating the death of the H-SC freshman at the request of the Hampden-Sydney Police Department.

“A deceased 18-year-old male student was discovered at 9:15 a.m. Saturday (March 25) in a dorm room,” Geller said. “The remains were transported to the Office of the Medical Examiner in Richmond for examination and autopsy. The death remains under investigation.”

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H-SC Marketing and Communications Director Gordon Neal said the State Police beginning an investigation is routine in incidents like this, and the college will be cooperating fully.

H. Carter Cole

“In addition, the college is conducting its own investigation in accordance with its existing procedures and policies,” Neal said.

As of Tuesday evening, Geller said the VSP has “nothing further to add as the investigation remains ongoing at this time.”

On Wednesday morning, Neal said H-SC had no further updates at that point.

H-SC released a statement March 27, confirming Cole’s sudden death and describing him as “an outstanding young man, a loyal teammate, friend and brother. The Hampden-Sydney community mourns his loss, and our thoughts and prayers are with his family.”

“Carter, a freshman from Jeffersonton …  was a member of the Hampden-Sydney swim team and the Alpha Chi Sigma fraternity,” H-SC officials said in the statement.

The statement also noted that several events were held honoring the life of Cole, including a candlelight vigil on Whitehouse Lawn at H-SC on March 29 and a memorial service in College Church at H-SC on March 30. Visitation was made available March 31 at the Found and Sons Funeral Chapel in Culpeper, and a memorial service was held Saturday afternoon at Culpeper Baptist Church.