Society

Former Columbia Student Jessica Fingers Found Dead in Dorm

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht
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A former Columbia University student was found dead in a friend's Manhattan dormitory room on Sunday after an apparent overdose.

Jessica Fingers, who took a leave of absence from Columbia last year, was visiting a female friend who lived in the East Campus Residence Hall on Morningside Drive. She was found just after 11:30 a.m. face-up on the floor. Unconscious and nonresponsive, she was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police believe drugs might have played a role in the young woman’s death. No foul play is suspected.

A source told the Daily News Fingers was discovered by her boyfriend, Peter Russell, who does not attend Columbia.

“I woke up and the love of my life was dead next to me,” Russell wrote on his Facebook page “My life is over…Shes gone so i have nothing to live for…”

Shortly thereafter Russell received a response from a man believed to be the girl’s older brother, Tyrell Fingers. “F**k u peter im coming for ur life,” wrote the Facebook user Flacko Ty.

According to Kevin Shollenberger, the dean of student affairs, Fingers was a Columbia student until she took a leave of absence after the spring 2012 semester.

Fingers had been a track star at Monticello High School, near Charlottesville.

She attended Columbia with a full scholarship and was recruited to join the university’s women’s varsity track-and-field team. The University declined to comment on why she might have taken leave last year. Her mother’s Facebook page mentioned in Feb. 2012 that the girl had suffered blood clots in her brain and a stroke. Her stepfather Robert Bellamy said Sunday that the girl recovered from the stroke and was able to return to school.

“She loved Columbia,” Bellamy said of Jessica ouside the family home in Monticello Sunday night. “It was her dream school.”

Sources: NY PostNY Daily News