ALBURGH, Vt. – A man died Tuesday night after a fight broke out among spectators at a middle school basketball game in northern Vermont, authorities said.
According to a news release from the Vermont State Police, Russell Giroux, 60, of Alburgh, was pronounced dead at Northwestern Medical Center in St. Albans.
State troopers responded to the Alburgh Community Center at about 6:45 p.m. EST over reports of a fight involving “multiple spectators” during a game between Alburgh and St. Albans during a game between seventh- and eighth-graders, the release stated.
Video taken at the scene by spectators with cellphones showed spectators being tackled and punches thrown, WCAX-TV reported.
The fight ended before troopers arrived at the scene and some of the participants had already left, according to VTDigger.
State police said in its news release that Giroux, who had been a participant in the fight and had left the building, sought medical attention and was taken by ambulance to the hospital.
Giroux was pronounced dead at the hospital. The circumstances surrounding his death are unclear, troopers said.
Jay Nichols, the executive director of The Vermont Principals’ Association, said in a statement that the group had no information about the event beyond what the authorities provided, according to The Associated Press.
“Although we can not speak specifically about the events at this individual game, we would like to once again emphasize that middle and high school sports are educational and are for the benefit of the student-athletes,” Nichols said in his statement. “Spectators that cannot behave appropriately can be barred from events and can face criminal charges.”
Giroux’s body will be taken to the Chief Medical Examiner’s Office in Burlington for an autopsy, WPTZ-TV reported.
Alburgh is located in northern Vermont near the Canadian border. It is surrounded on three sides by Lake Champlain.
An investigation is ongoing, police said.
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