The attorney for the family of Penn State fraternity pledge Timothy Piazza, who died after falling down stairs during a pledge ceremony at the frat house, called the actions of the fraternity brothers who didn't call for help the "worst possible debauchery and depravity that you could possibly have anywhere, let alone a college campus".
The grand jury, aided by security camera footage, said the fraternity was heavily stocked with booze for the February 2 ceremony at which Piazza, a sophomore engineering student from Lebanon, N.J., and 13 others accepted pledge bids.
Court documents detail a night of intense hazing with alcohol and a group of frat brothers watching Piazza squirm and struggle after falling down those stairs. The pledges were pressured to chug vodka, shotgun beers and drink wine.
In an interview with co-anchor Robin Roberts on "Good Morning America", Davis called Piazza's death a "preventable tragedy". "So when I walked into the room and I saw Timothy lying on the couch, at first I'm thinking he probably had way too much to drink, he could possibly have alcohol poisoning", Davis said. Massively drunk, he fell down a flight of stairs, twice, suffering critical bleeding in his belly and his skull. "We need to call 911". Davis said he thought he should be at a hospital instead, and told his new frat brothers so. "They said, "No, you're overreacting, you don't know what you're talking about, '" Davis said. I felt kind of useless and had no say in the situation". "He could have a concussion.'" He said his pleas continued to be disregarded.
"Sadly", he said, "we're never going to see his smile again except in pictures". "I was told I was overreacting, I was insane". Piazza's father, Jim Piazza, said at a press conference Friday morning, "This didn't have to happen".
In the wake of Piazza's death, Penn State President Eric J. Barron permanently banned the fraternity.
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Penn State University's president is calling a grand jury report into the death of a student after an alcohol-fueled fraternity event heart-wrenching, sickening and incomprehensible.
"Beta Theta Pi International Fraternity has clearly and consistently expressed its position that it does not tolerate hazing or alcohol abuse in any form by its members", the Beta Theta Pi national fraternity said in statement on May 5. Young and Casey are also charged with tampering with evidence. They are prohibited from having alcohol and non-prescription drugs, can not leave their home state without express permission from the judge and must surrender their passports, the district attorney said.
As ABC News reported Friday, all defendants charged with involuntary manslaughter were preliminarily arraigned Friday afternoon.
Ten of the defendants were arraigned Friday and were released on bail. "But that doesn't mean there's any intent involved in any of this".
The 19-year-old sophomore student passed away in February after falling almost five metres down a flight of stairs, with his would-be fraternity brothers waiting more than 12 hours to alert the authorities. The International Fraternity's policy that prohibited alcohol in the Penn State chapter house, along with the extensive annual investment in risk management, leadership and character-development programs that teach young men the importance of integrity and caring for others, underscored the International Fraternity's expectations of all of its members.