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Members of Beta Theta Pi frat at Penn State were charged in the death of a former pledge

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The Centre County District Attorney announced Friday that Beta Theta Pi and 18 people have been charged in connection to the death of Pennsylvania State University student Timothy Piazza, following a three-month long investigation.

Piazza, 19, died February 4 at Penn State Hershey Medical Center after he fell down stairs at the Beta Theta Pi fraternity house in State College during a party on February 2.

He was a pledge at the fraternity.

Penn State permanently banned Beta Theta Pi, citing evidence of hazing, forced drinking and other illegal activity.

At least eight members are each charged with involuntary manslaughter, aggravated assault, simple assault, recklessly endangering another person, hazing, furnishing alcohol to minors and unlawful acts relative to liquor.

Two members are also charged with tampering with evidence. Ten others are also facing charges.

This tweet shows the full list of charges the members face.

The grand jury concluded that Piazza’s death was not an unfortunate accident, but was the direct result of encouraged reckless conduct that demonstrated a reckless disregard for human life.

Investigators say the fraternity waited 40+ minutes before anyone called for help after they discovered Piazza was looking deathly ill the morning after the party. The grand jury found evidence that Beta Theta Pi engaged in hazing, not just for Piazza’s spring 2017 pledge class, but also previous pledge classes in spring and fall of 2016.


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