Adam Jensen
The Union news service

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February 18, 2013
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Hypothermia, drugs noted in girl’s death after Lake Tahoe event

An autopsy has concluded that a Petaluma teenager who died after leaving South Lake Tahoe’s SnowGlobe Music Festival New Year’s Eve died of “probable hypothermia.”

Alyssa Byrne, 19, died of “probable hypothermia due to prolonged environmental exposure,” according to a Monday statement from the El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office.

“Methampethamine toxicity” and “multiple psychoactive drug ingestion” were also “significant conditions” in the death of Byrne, whose body was found in a snowbank off Pioneer Trail in the area of the festival Jan. 4

Sheriff’s spokesman Lt. Pete Van Arnum declined to release exactly what drugs were found in Byrne’s system. He said Byrne’s family requested the information not be released.

Alcohol was not found during toxicology tests, Van Arnum said.

Byrne had a “fairly high level” of methaphetamine in her system at the time of her death, Van Arnum said, but the pathologist who examined her body believed she succumbed to the cold.

Ecstasy, a drug which is popular in the electronic dance music scene, would show up separate from methaphetamine on an autopsy report, Van Arnum said.

Adam Jensen writes for the Tahoe Daily Tribune, a sister publication of The Union.


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The Union Updated Feb 19, 2013 08:06AM Published Feb 27, 2013 12:43AM Copyright 2013 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.