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HQ Trivia co-founder found dead — authorities point to drug overdose

The co-founder and CEO of popular game HQ Trivia, Colin Kroll, was found dead in his New York apartment early Sunday morning, according to reports from TMZ and the New York Post. Kroll was reportedly discovered after his girlfriend asked police to do a welfare check, prompted by her inability to get in touch with him. He was 34.

“Cops went to downtown Manhattan to do a welfare check, entered his apartment and found Kroll’s body in his bedroom with drug paraphernalia nearby,” the report from TMZ reads. Multiple forms of drugs were reportedly discovered in his apartment, including cocaine. In a police report, uncovered by Business Insider, police said they discovered a man “unconscious and unresponsive in a bedroom” on Spring Street.

According to Entrepreneur Wiki, Kroll graduated from Oakland University with a degree in computer science, then went on to co-found Vine in the spring of 2012. Kroll launched HQ Trivia — an app and trivia game — in August 2017 alongside the co-founder of Vine, Rus Yusupov. While the game was initially a huge success, reaching the top 10 downloads on Apple, it had been suffering from a “shrinking audience” in recent months, according to Recode.

Colin Kroll, at podium, and Rus Yusupov, far left, accept the Breakthrough Award for Emerging Technology at the Variety Breakthrough of the Year Awards in 2014. (Photo: Isaac Brekken)

The two had announced plans to launch another app, a Wheel of Fortune type of game. While Kroll had a verified Twitter account with more than 12,000 followers, he had yet to tweet. In the aftermath of the news, many began to express their sadness on Twitter. “RIP Colin Kroll. I had the pleasure of interviewing him about transition to HQ CEO,” tweeted Digiday reporter Kerry Flynn, calling him “smart and kind, not perfect, no one is, but good.”

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