Party survivor blames purple drank for friend's death - KMSP-TV

Party survivor blames purple drank for friend's death

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

On the same day that two men arrested in the death of a 14-year-old St. Paul teen were released from jail while investigators seek more evidence, FOX 9 News spoke with the 17-year-old survivor of that fatal night.

Family members found 14-year-old Pauviera Linson dead in her bed early Monday morning after a night of partying in Burnsville with two men -- 19-year-old Jacob Sawyer and 25-year-old Robert Kibble -- and her friend, 17-year-old Suwuan Cross.

"I wake up, turn Pauvi over -- blood and mucus all right here," Cross recalled. "Tried to do CPR. Her body was cold and hard."

Cross was hospitalized after the party. Days later, she told FOX 9 News she is still feeling the lingering effects -- including blurry vision -- from the potent mix of drugs and alcohol.

"We could move, but we couldn't feel our skin," Cross recalled. "We started itching our whole body, itching every five minutes."

What's more, she said she is absolutely certain that the codeine-laced cocktail is to blame.

"The problem is drinking it too fast -- gulping and gulping it," she explained.

Cross said she and her best friend, known to friends and loved ones as Pauvi, went to the birthday party at a Burnsville home where the two hung out with several older men. Marijuana and alcohol were available at the party, along with a mixed drink that has become the focus of the death investigation.

"It made us slow, like falling over," Cross told FOX 9 News.

Cross said she had no idea what was in the cocktail, but police say it was what is commonly referred to as "purple drank," a "dirty Sprite" or a "lean" -- a potentially dangerous combination of soda and prescription cough syrup with codeine.

Experts warn that narcotic cocktail can slow a victim's breathing to the point of death.

Prosecutors say Sawyer and Kibble were released from jail because more evidence is needed to charge them, and the Cross family insists that charges are a must.

"It's a very criminal act -- like me giving alcohol to a child. I would never give alcohol to a child," said Stephanie Morris, Suwuan's mother. "I'm a parent all the time."

Investigators are hoping toxicology results from the Linson's autopsy will pinpoint the cause of death and determine whether the drug cocktail killed her or not.

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