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Indicted Friend Says He Thought Bias Would Live

September 04, 1986|From The Washington Post

WASHINGTON — Brian Tribble, indicted on drug charges in connection with the cocaine death of University of Maryland basketball star Len Bias, said Wednesday that he did not think his friend would die when he collapsed before his eyes in a College Park, Md., dormitory room last June.

"I was waiting for him to get up," Tribble said during an interview at his family home in Northeast Washington.

"I knew he was going to get up. The only reason why he didn't get up is we didn't know what we were doing. We knew CPR, but we didn't have the equipment."

After he called for an ambulance that took Bias to Leland Memorial Hospital in Riverdale, Md., Tribble followed by car but left when he was told that Bias still had a faint heartbeat. "I was sure that I wasn't in trouble," Tribble said. "I didn't think I was going to be in any trouble. I just was trying to make sure he (Bias) didn't get in any trouble. I didn't want nobody to know.. . . "

Tribble, 24, with his mother Loretta at his side, discussed his relationship with Bias for the first time since he was indicted July 25 by a Prince Georges County, Md., grand jury on charges of possession of PCP, possession and distribution of cocaine and possession with intent to distribute cocaine in connection with Bias' death.

Tribble said he is still shocked by Bias' death, confused by the publicity that has made him feel like a hunted man and determined to save his memories of the night for his own defense. A trial is tentatively scheduled for Nov. 17.

"I'm looking forward to the trial. Then everything will be clear. Then I can talk more."

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