The father of 16-year-old Davis Allen Cripe is warning parents and students about the dangers of drinking too many energy drinks, after his son died last month. According to the coroner, the initial autopsy didn’t show the cause of death, but further investigations have revealed that the teen died of consuming too much Caffeine, causing a probable arrhythmia.

Caffeine-induced cardiac event for South Carolina teen

Richland County Coroner Gary Watts made a statement at a news conference on Monday, together with the teenager’s father, Sean Cripe. Watts called the official cause of death a “caffeine-induced cardiac event” which led to what was likely arrhythmia.

On the day of his death, Davis had consumed a McDonald’s café latte, a large Diet Mountain Dew as well as an unnamed energy drink, all within around two hours, leading to his death on April 26. According to Watts, the teenager was otherwise healthy and there was no family medical history that could have led to his death.

Teenager collapses in class after consuming too much caffeine

As noted by WLTX19, Watts went on to say that the Emergency Medical Service had received a call at 2:28 p.m. to say Davis had collapsed in his class at Spring Hill High School. The teenager was then pronounced dead at the Palmetto Health Baptist Parkridge Hospital at 3:40 p.m.

Watts added that besides being healthy, the teenager was well known among his classmates and friends for advocating against the use of alcohol and drugs.

However, he said Davis – like so many other people these days – did something he thought was harmless – he drank a lot of caffeine. Watts stressed that Davis died from ingesting a legal substance. While Watts didn’t directly attribute Davis’ death to a caffeine overdose, he did say the teenager was known to drink caffeinated beverages, but not in a way that could be construed as an addiction.

A very controversial diagnosis

Watts went on to say that this was a “very controversial diagnosis,” but added that one cup of coffee or a soda isn’t dangerous, but consuming large amounts of caffeine can seriously risk health problems. He said caffeine doesn’t have the same effect on everyone, but people need to be aware of the dangers.

Teenager’s father asks other teens to stop buying energy drinks

Sean Cripe, Davis’ father, then spoke up at the news conference, barely able to hold back his tears and asking parents to speak to their children about the dangers of too much caffeine. He particularly warned against energy drinks. Cripe said we all worry about our teenagers, especially when they start driving, but it wasn’t something like a car crash that took his son’s life, it was an energy drink. He begged teenagers to stop buying those drinks. Cripe said there is no reason to buy them.