Memphis student apparently electrocuted in dorm

By Janice Broach - bio | email

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - The Shelby County Medical Examiner says a University of Memphis student found dead in a dorm during the Christmas break was apparently electrocuted.

According to the autopsy report, it appeared that 18-year-old Joseph Liner was locked in the bathroom and tried to crawl through the ceiling tiles.

He fell through the ceiling into his dorm room in Richardson Towers.

According to the autopsy report, "the possibility of a low-voltage electrocution cannot be ruled out and is the most likely cause of death in this individual."

Students like Heather Martin speculated Monday about how Liner came to be locked in the bathroom.

"The lock was on the outside," Martin said. "Either he locked it and closed it or somebody locked him in there."

University of Memphis Police would not comment Monday, referring all questions to the Memphis Police Department.

An MPD spokesperson said no one locked Liner in the bathroom, and it is not clear what happened.

Copyright 2010 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.  The AP contributed to this story.