UPDATE: Acute alcohol intoxication cited in Columbus death

By The Associated Press

COLUMBUS — The Lowndes County coroner says acute alcohol intoxication killed a Columbus man whose body was found earlier this week at Ruben’s Fish House.

Coroner Greg Merchant tells The Commercial Dispatch that John Caldwell died after a drinking contest at the restaurant with an off-duty employee Sunday night. Caldwell’s body was found Monday in the restaurant.

Merchant says Caldwell’s blood alcohol level was 0.5 percent. He says a potentially lethal level is 0.35 percent to 0.4 percent.

Merchant says restaurant employees put the men in a booth so they could sleep off the alcohol. The other man apparently left at some point.

Detective Ryan Rickert of the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Department is investigating the case but would not comment.