French University Director Richard Descoings Found Dead in Manhattan Hotel

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Sciences Po headmaster French Richard Descoings poses on April 11, 2010 during the Cite de la Reussite in Paris. La Cite de la Reussite has gathered students from Europe most prestigious universities and elite schools to listen to an exceptional panel of speakers coming from various backgrounds. Tackling political, cultural and scientific issues, it is highly regarded as a forum for reflection, debate and discussion in order to better understand the world of today and to envisage its foundations of tomorrow.
Photo: MIGUEL MEDINA/AFP

Richard Descoings, the director of the Paris Institute of Political Studies, was found dead yesterday, naked in a Manhattan hotel room, ABC News reports. There was no evident trauma to the 53-year-old's body and investigators "haven't determined that there was foul play," according to an NYPD spokesman. Alcohol and prescription drugs were reportedly found nearby, and the Times reports that Descoings's cell phone and laptop were discovered on an outside landing, apparently thrown from the room. Descoings, who was in town for a U.N. conference at Columbia, is credited with improving the reputation of the already elite French school, better known as Sciences Po Paris. Autopsy results are expected by the end of the day.