Miami sophomore dies on Oxford train tracks
Published: Tuesday, October 29, 2013
Updated: Wednesday, December 4, 2013 15:12
Credit: Bethany Miller
Today the Miami University community mourns the loss of 19-year-old sophomore Jacob Jarman, who was found dead on Oxford railroad tracks early Saturday morning. The Oxford Police Department (OPD) continues to investigate, according to Sgt. Jon Varley.
“During the investigation, they’re going to try to determine if it was deliberate or an accident,” he said. “To do that, we’ll check phone messages, talk to friends and go back as far as we can to see if there are any issues with relationships, etcetera … they’ll check all that and see if there were any known issues.”
OPD found Jarman’s body at 9:13 a.m. on the tracks east of the intersection of South College and Foxfire Drive. Oxford Township Police Department, Miami University Police Department and CSX railroad personnel provided additional support.
Jarman’s time of death has not yet been released.
In the last eight years, five individuals have died after being hit by a train in or just outside Oxford, according to Varley. Including Jarman, four of those individuals were Miami students.
Varley explained that the train tracks in Oxford are the private property of CSX Transportation.
“With the miles and miles and miles of track they have, there’s no way to [regulate trespassing],” Varley said. “If they see there’s a problem in a certain area, they’ll address that area.”
CSX Railroad System Production Team Mechanic John Theodore, who has worked for CSX for 12 years, said people often underestimate the danger of moving trains.
“Train safety is extremely important,” Theodore said. “People get complacent around trains ... The rate of their speed is misleading.”
OPD attended the autopsy this morning and is awaiting the toxicology report.
It has not yet been determined whether alcohol played a role in the student’s death.
“If it can be determined that [underage intoxication] was a direct causation or direct factor, then yes, it will probably be acted on,” Varley said. “And if there was clearly somebody responsible, they could also end up being charged.”
A second-year transfer student from Greenwood Village, Co., Jarman lived in Hahne Residence Hall and was studying journalism and communication.
President David Hodge addressed the Miami community with a statement on Twitter.
“We mourn the tragic death of a Miami student this weekend. Our hearts go out to the family in their grief,” Hodge said.
Jarman’s family has been notified and is en route back to Colorado for his burial.
With additional reporting by Chris Curme, Community Editor.