Student found dead at rubbish dump was ‘crushed to death’ in lorry after falling asleep in bin while drunk
A student who was found dead at a waste treatment facility is believed to have been crushed to death in the back of a bin lorry.
Tragic Garrett Elsey, 22 from Canada, was scooped up in a communal bin during a lorry collection round in Clifton, Bristol, following a night on the town.
Horrified workers found his body in rubbish dumped by the truck on Thursday morning – the day after he arrived in Britain to begin a Masters course in international security.
Further tests will be carried out on Garrett’s body before an official cause of death can be confirmed.
But Avon and Somerset Police yesterday refused to rule out speculation that the student was alive when he was picked up by the bin lorry and died of fatal crush injuries.
A spokeswoman for Avon and Somerset police said: “We have provisional findings, however further investigations need to take place in conjunction with the coroner.
“This may take time, which means we cannot confirm cause death at this stage.”
Garrett, from Sherwood Park near Edmonton, Alberta, arrived in Bristol last Wednesday to begin his Masters course.
He enrolled at the University and checked into his student residence before texting his parents to say he was well but his airline had lost his luggage.
The history and political science graduate then went out for the evening with a friend he used to play rugby with in Canada.
He left his friend during the evening but never made it home.
It is believed he fell or climbed into a bin at a block of £250,000 flats in Clifton, Bristol, which was collected by refuse workers on Thursday.
Workers at the New Earth Solutions waste treatment unit in Avonmouth discovered his body as they emptied rubbish from the lorry on Thursday morning.
Police searched a refuse area at The Jacob’s Building, a four-storey complex which comprises of 18 apartments, costing around £250,000 each.
The block is close to the Clifton Triangle, which has many bars and clubs that are popular with students from the nearby university.
One resident of The Jacob’s Building said: “It’s a complete shock – the circumstances are a bit concerning really”.
Another added: “It’s grim.”
Police identified former Carleton University student Garrett from his passport and the fingerprints he gave when he entered the UK.
Speaking after Garrett’s death, his uncle Brent Elsey paid tribute to the bright student but said his family had many “outstanding questions”.
He said: “He was always happy. He was a very hard worker. He always tried to do the best that he could.
“He was not afraid of any kind of challenge and was very successful at most of the things he put his hand to.
“He had a strong interest in political science.
“He had been very successful both academically and athletically and was a young man who had worked hard, was well-recognized by his peers and coaches and teachers.”
An inquest into Garrett’s death is likely to be held at a later date.