Wisconsin family searches for answers after daughter dies at Mexico resort

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Monday, July 17, 2017
Wisconsin woman dies at Mexican resort
A Wisconsin family is searching for answers after their daughter died under mysterious circumstances at a five-star resort in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

PLAYA DEL CARMEN, Mexico -- A Wisconsin family is desperately searching for answers after their 20-year-old daughter died under mysterious circumstances at a five-star resort during a family vacation earlier this year in Playa del Carmen, Mexico.

Abbey Conner, 20, drowned in January while swimming with her brother, Austin Conner, 23, in chest-deep water at the pool in the Iberostar Paraiso Resort.

When Abbey and Austin Conner did not show up for dinner, their mother and stepfather became concerned, and they eventually learned that the siblings had been taken to an emergency room 14 miles away, Bill Conner, their biological father, who was not in Mexico at the time, told ABC News.

The hotel told the family that the two were found unconscious and facedown in the pool, according to Bill Conner. Austin Conner suffered a concussion, and Abbey Conner sustained a broken collarbone and was brain dead before succumbing to her injuries in a Florida hospital days later.

Austin Conner said they had been drinking before their swim, and their blood alcohol level was around 0.25 - three times the legal limit in their home state of Wisconsin.

Mexican officials ruled Abbey Conner's death an accidental drowning, but her family members say local police refuse to investigate further into what caused her death.

"Someone needs to be held responsible for this," Bill Conner said. "It doesn't make any sense. We're lucky we didn't lose both of our kids."

"She was healthy, but for some reason she drowns in a pool. Waist deep ... it's unbelievable," he added.

The U.S. Department of State told ABC News it was "aware of the case" and extended "sincere condolences to family and friends." It said is is working to provide consular assistance but had no further comment, out of respect for the family.

Iberostar Paraiso Resort did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment.