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Co-Founder Of Vine And HQ Trivia Apps Found Dead At 34 Of Possible Drug Overdose

Cocaine and heroin were found in Colin Kroll's apartment, police told the New York Times. 

By Sharon Lynn Pruitt

Colin Kroll, co-founder of the HQ Trivia app as well as the now-extinct Vine app, was found dead in his home over the weekend.

Police discovered Kroll facedown on his bed in his Manhattan apartment on Sunday after a woman with an undefined relationship to Kroll requested that they perform a wellness check, The New York Times reports. Authorities told the paper that both cocaine and heroin were found on the premises.

Kroll was pronounced dead on the scene around an hour after being found unconscious and unresponsive, according to The Daily Beast. An official cause of death has yet to be announced, but police are investigating it as a possible overdose, the outlet reports. He was 34.

Kroll became a well-known name in the app industry after partnering with fellow tech entrepreneurs Dom Hofmann and Rus Yusupov to launch the hugely popular video app Vine. Twitter acquired Vine in 2012, and Kroll and Yusupov later went on to co-found the HQ Trivia app, a livestreamed trivia game show that launched on mobile last year.

HQ Trivia confirmed Kroll’s passing in a Twitter statement on Sunday.

“We learned today of the passing of our friend and founder, Colin Kroll, and it's with deep sadness that we say goodbye,” reads their statement. “Our thoughts go out to his family, friends and loved ones during this incredibly difficult time.”

Yusupov also addressed Kroll’s passing on Twitter on Sunday.

“So sad to hear about the passing of my friend and co-founder Colin Kroll. My thoughts & prayers go out to his loved ones,” Yusupov wrote. “I will forever remember him for his kind soul and big heart. He made the world and internet a better place. Rest in peace, brother.”

Kroll’s father, Alan Kroll, told The Times that while his son did use drugs recreationally, he did not abuse them and had stopped drinking recently.

Last year, when HQ Trivia was seeking additional investment, rumors surfaced that Kroll had engaged in “creepy” behavior when interacting with female employees during his time at Vine, according to a Recode report. The outlet reported that the accusations had been discovered by potential investors and, as a result, had stymied the growth of Yusupov’s and Kroll’s company Intermedia Labs. Jeremy Liew, an investor and a board member at Intermedia Labs, told Recode that while an investigation into the matter did reveal a history of “discomfort” with Kroll’s behavior, there was no evidence that warranted him leaving the company.

[Photo: Getty Images]

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