NEW INFORMATION: Winona State student found dead in restaurant food elevator

Courtesy: Winona State University
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FOUNTAIN CITY, Wis. (WEAU/AP) -- Police in western Wisconsin are investigating the death of a college student whose body was found in a dumbwaiter at a bar and grill.

Police responded to a 911 call at WingDam Saloon and Grill in Fountain City about 8 p.m. Monday. The body of a 21-year-old bar employee was found in the food elevator connected to the kitchen.

Winona State University identifies the victim as Brooke Baures of Chetek, a senior majoring in social work at the Minnesota school.

Fountain City Police Chief Jason Mork says the dumbwaiter's opening is about 3 feet by 3 feet.

"This is not a full size people elevator but a slightly smaller, its general purpose from my understanding is to move food form the first floor to the second floor and she was found trapped in it," said Mork.

Dumbwaiter accidents are rare, according to the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Only two incidents, both fatal, have happened in the U.S. between 2003 and 2013, according to the OHSA database.

Community members say tragedies like this are not common in the small city of Fountain City.

"I mean stuff like this probably happens in big metropolitan areas, you don't hear much of it, but something like this happens in a little town like this?" said one patron at a neighboring bar.

Mork said it's an incident that will affect the entire community.

"This will make an impact, but nothing comparable to the family, that's my biggest role right now is just trying to get the information that I can the best I can, directly, indirectly, and then getting to the family," said Mork.

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WINONA, Minn. (WEAU) -- Winona State University called the woman who was found dead in a Fountain City bar a talented gymnast and leader of its gymnastics team.

The Fountain City Police Department and Buffalo County Sheriff's Office were called to the WingDam Bar and Saloon on North Shore Drive in Fountain City before 8 p.m. Monday. They found the body of a 21-year-old woman who worked there in a dumbwaiter in the kitchen.

Fountain City police declined to identify the woman Tuesday morning, but Winona State University said she is Brooke Baures, a Chetek native who competed on the school's Women's Gymnastics team from 2011 to this year.

“Brooke was a leader on that team and a very talented gymnast,” Winona State University Athletic Director Eric Schoh said in a statement. “This is a tremendous loss for our community, and we ask that you keep Brooke and her family, friends, coaches and teammates in your thoughts.”

Baures was a senior at the university who majored in social work. Investigators say "there are no indicators of a criminal act." They are keeping the investigation open to follow-up and so that an autopsy can be done right away. Police said the bar is closed Tuesday as they continue the investigation.
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ALMA, Wis. (WEAU) -- Police are investigating the death of a woman whose body was found in a Fountain City bar.

The Fountain City Police Department and Buffalo County Sheriff's Office were called to the WingDam Bar and Saloon on North Shore Drive in Fountain City before 8 p.m. Monday. They found the body of a 21-year-old woman who worked there in a dumbwaiter in the kitchen.

Investigators say "there are no indicators of a criminal act." They are keeping the investigation open to follow-up and so that an autopsy can be done right away. A news release did not identify the woman.