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16-year-old boy dies of heart problems after too much caffeine

Davis Cripe had no pre-existing heart condition that might have caused him to collapse and die in a classroom last month.

COLUMBIA, S.C. — A coroner says a healthy 16-year-old South Carolina high school student died from heart problems after drinking too much caffeine.

Richland County Coroner Gary Watts said Monday that Davis Cripe had no pre-existing heart condition that might have caused him to collapse and die in a classroom last month.

Watts says Cripe drank a large Mountain Dew, a latte from McDonald’s and an energy drink in the two hours before his heart fell out of rhythm at Spring Hill High School near Chapin on April 26.

Watts says parents need to know that while a soda or a cup of coffee is OK for teens, large amounts of caffeine can be deadly.

At the time of Cripe’s death, the school district released the following statement:

“It is with great sadness that we grieve the loss of a Spring Hill High School student today. This is a devastating loss to our entire district community.

At this time, we are respecting the privacy of our student’s family as they grieve this tremendous loss.

Grief counselors will be available at the school for staff and students for the rest of the week.”