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September 24, 2023

Pittsburgh Man Who Was Strangled to Death By a Friend In Hawaii Worked For Deloitte Consulting (UPDATE)

It’s been several weeks since we wrote about the Hawaiian vacation amongst three friends that turned deadly, so let’s catch you up on the latest.

First, Benjamin Fleming of Pittsburgh, who was charged with manslaughter in the death of his friend and Carnegie Mellon University classmate Abhishek Gupta, who worked for Deloitte Consulting, was allowed to return to the U.S. mainland before his trial starts later this summer, the Associated Press reported on April 21.

Fleming, who was charged with manslaughter on March 30 and eventually released on $250,000 bond, has to return to Hawaii for hearings in June and two weeks before his Aug. 3 trial date, 3rd Circuit Court Judge Robert D.S. Kim ruled.

During a preliminary hearing on April 9, the third person in the group, Alexander Germany-Wald, who also works for Deloitte and graduated in the same Carnegie Mellon class as Fleming and Gupta, testified that Gupta got “psychotically” drunk on the first night of their vacation.

According to AP:

Germany-Wald said he walked Gupta back to their Kailua-Kona Airbnb after Gupta was asked to leave a bar. Fleming stayed behind.

Germany-Wald said he locked himself in a bedroom to seclude himself from Gupta, who was angry about having to go back to the condo.

At one point, the two of them got into a fistfight, with Gupta on top of Germany-Wald and punching him, Germany-Wald testified at the hearing, which began Wednesday: “I didn’t know if he would stop.”

Fleming returned to the condo and “came to my aid and restrained Mr. Gupta,” Germany-Wald said, adding that he didn’t see what kind of hold Fleming, who is in the Army, used to restrain Gupta.

They heard Gupta snoring but later realized he wasn’t breathing, Alexander-Wald said, and Fleming called 911.

An autopsy later revealed that Gupta died by strangulation.

Judge Rules Probable Cause To Charge Pittsburgh Man Benjamin Fleming With Manslaughter After Deadly Hawaii Vacation Rental Fight [AP]
Benjamin Fleming, Man Accused Of Manslaughter, May Leave Hawaii Before Trial [AP]

[Originally posted on April 5.]

Here’s the latest on the altercation last week that turned deadly at a vacation rental home in Hawaii. Abhishek Gupta, 30, of Pittsburgh, who died by strangulation after a night of drinking with two friends, worked as a senior consultant with Deloitte Consulting, according to a report by the website Poets&Quants.

Abhishek Gupta

Benjamin Fleming, 37, of Pittsburgh was charged with manslaughter on March 30 after being accused of strangling Gupta. He remains in custody on $250,000 bail. The other person who was with Gupta and Fleming, 31-year-old Alexander Germany-Wald of Boston, was not charged by police. He also works for Deloitte as a senior consultant.

Poets&Quants reported that the three men were in the same MBA graduating class of 2020 at Carnegie Mellon University’s Tepper School of Business in Pittsburgh.

According to a media release by the Hawaii Police Department, police received a call at 2:09 a.m. on March 29 for a man who was unresponsive and not breathing at the vacation rental home in Kailua-Kona. At the scene, fire department personnel performed CPR on Gupta but were unsuccessful. It was later determined that a physical confrontation had occurred between the three friends at the rental complex.

In a 911 dispatch call, an emergency responder said: “CPR is in progress. Per the reporting party who is patient’s friend, patient went unconscious and was drinking alcohol.” It has been reported that Fleming called 911 after the altercation.

Poets&Quants reported that during the altercation, Fleming allegedly put Gupta in a chokehold that led to his death:

“From the investigation, we don’t believe the intent was to kill Mr. Gupta,” prosecutor Chase Murray told a local television news program in Pittsburgh.

Benjamin Fleming

Fleming spent nearly 19 years in the U.S. Army, including as a platoon leader who “led 24 Soldier Platoon through training and over 300 operations in Afghanistan,” according to his LinkedIn profile. He was a communications specialist with the Army before enrolling in the Tepper School of Business. At the time of his arrest, Fleming was a business development intern with the Association of Spaceflight Professionals, which is based in St. Petersburg, FL.

Gupta had only worked at Deloitte full time since last September, but was a summer associate at Deloitte in the Chicago area from May 2019 to August 2019 while he went to school at Tepper and “led a fast paced Source-to-Pay assessment for a major pharmaceutical company, resulting in measurable and tangible future state recommendations,” he mentioned in his LinkedIn profile.

During his time at Tepper, Gupta won first place (local) and second place (national) in the Deloitte National Case Competition, and participated in other case competitions, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Before enrolling in Tepper and working at Deloitte, Gupta spent more than four years as an employee of infrastructure consulting firm AECOM. He spent his last two years there as a lead cost analyst, according to his LinkedIn profile.

Gupta said he enjoyed running, grilling, and playing poker in his spare time. He also mentioned that he loved to travel—he had visited 21 countries and 37 states— and was in the process of obtaining a private pilot license.

A Hawaiian Getaway For Tepper MBAs Ends In A Murder [Poets&Quants]

Related article:

Deloitte Consultant Not Charged In the Death of a Pittsburgh Man Following an Altercation In Hawaii

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