ITHACA, N.Y. —Police said it will take weeks to find out how a 20-year-old man died at Ithaca’s Second Dam.

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Eric Richardson, of Virgil, died while cliff jumping Sunday evening with friends at the gorge. Friends dove in to save him when he didn’t resurface and tried to resuscitate him, police said. But he was dead when first responders arrived at the scene.

It will take three to four weeks for toxicology tests to be completed, meaning officials will be unable to determine how he drowned, said Lt. Dan Donahue, of the Tompkins County Sheriff’s Office.

He said it unclear if Richardson hit something in the dam or if alcohol or drugs were a factor in the drowning. He did, however, say foul play does not seem to be involved in the man’s death.

An autopsy was completed Monday, but until toxicology results are complete, police likely won’t be releasing more information about the cause of drowning.

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Jolene Almendarez

Jolene Almendarez is Managing Editor at The Ithaca Voice. She can be reached at; you can learn more about her at the links in the top right of this box.