University of Illinois Police Detail Timeline in Student’s Death Investigation

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URBANA, IL – The University of Illinois Police Department has released a detailed timeline of events leading up to the discovery of 18-year-old student Akul Dhawan, who was found deceased on January 20. 

According to the police, initial investigations suggest the death was accidental, with no indications of foul play. The timeline traces the events from the early hours of January 20, when a concerned friend first contacted police at 1:23 a.m., to the eventual discovery of Mr. Dhawan at 11:08 a.m. behind 1203 W. Nevada St., Urbana. Key moments include the friend’s initial call reporting Mr. Dhawan missing, various searches conducted by the police in and around campus, and checks at local hospitals.

Subsequent investigations revealed that Mr. Dhawan had been consuming alcohol with friends at Busey-Evans Residence Hall before attending an event at Canopy Club. Security footage showed Mr. Dhawan outside the club being denied re-entry multiple times. Efforts by venue staff and a bystander to secure him a rideshare were unsuccessful, and he declined two rideshare vehicles.

The University of Illinois Police continue to gather information, including security camera footage and witness statements, to piece together Mr. Dhawan’s activities after leaving Canopy Club. In the meantime, a citizen complaint regarding the police response to the initial call is being reviewed in accordance with UIPD policy.

Investigators are urging anyone with information to contact the University of Illinois Police Department at 217-333-1216 or Champaign County Crime Stoppers at 217-373-TIPS.

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