On Tuesday night, a sixty-year-old man passed away after a fight at a middle school basketball game in Vermont.
The situation is now being investigated by the police after a fight erupted at the Alburgh Community Education Center. There was a basketball game going on with seventh- and eighth-grade boys that went to St. Albans and Alburgh middle schools.
A video on Twitter showed the fight happening as people attacked one another on the basketball court.
— dpat (@HalfBaked802) February 1, 2023
Police were called to the scene around 7 p.m. on Tuesday after they had been notified of a massive fight, which included spectators of the game. The fight was over before the police got to the location and most of the crowd who had been a part of it had already dissipated.
Russell Giroux reached out for medical help, according to law enforcement personnel, and was transported to a medical center by ambulance. He was later pronounced deceased at the center.
“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,” Jay Nichols, the executive director of The Vermont Principals’ Association, said. “Spectators that cannot behave appropriately can be barred from events and can face criminal charges.”
Vermont’s medical examiner’s office will carry out an autopsy, and the state law enforcement and Grand Isle state’s attorney’s office are also looking into the man’s death.
School leaders put out statements on Wednesday regarding the tragedy.
“All of us in the Maple Run Community are shocked and saddened by last night’s death of Russell Giroux after a physical altercation during a basketball game at the Alburgh Community Education Center,” Maple Run Unified School District superintendent Bill Kimball said.
“We extend our condolences and sympathies to his family and friends. Since our students observed the altercation, we are working in the next days to support our students and families in dealing with the consequences of the altercation and Mr. Giroux’s death. This morning we informed our school staff of the incident and put immediate supports in place for the students,” he added.
“Our immediate goal is to remind and educate our students and families that our school culture is one of family, community, and kindness,” the Grand Isle Supervisory Union superintendent Michael Clark, director of student services Nick DeVita, and Beth Hemingway, the principal, also said.