Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

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October 9, 2012

Another student hurt in deadly campus fountain

AMERICUS, Ga. - A campus fountain where a college student died two weeks ago the scene of an accident earlier this summer, when another student slipped, fell and suffered an electrical shock.

Ashley Lane Bentley, 23, was pushing her son in a stroller near a fountain on the campus of South Georgia Technical College on Aug. 15 when she "slipped on slime" and fell into the water, according to an accident report. She reported being shocked and, at least initially, unable to move.

Bentley declined to go to the hospital, and her son was unhurt. A campus employee also fell while trying to help, according to the report.

Sumter County Sheriff Pete Smith said his department was not called but is now reviewing the incident as part of its investigation into the death of Adrianna Rhine, 19, who died after falling into the fountain on Sept. 27.

Rhine's death was initially called a drowning, but the official cause has not been released. Her 3-year-old daughter was pulled from the fountain uninjured.

College President Sparky Reeves said maintenance crews checked the fountain after the August incident to ensure it was safe.

“We immediately shut it down and checked for electrical and mechanical problems," he said. "We then pressure washed it, put chemicals in it, and put a retaining chain barrier around it to keep people out of it."

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Details for this story were reported by the Americus, Ga., Times-Recorder.

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