The fact that one is no longer a university student in Virginia may not be enough to protect one from charges related to hazing. Two young men found this out to their detriment when they, along with seven current students at Louisiana State University, faced arrest related to an alleged recent hazing incident at their fraternity.
The fraternity’s national organization, which went on to revoke the chapter’s charter, provided hazing reports to LSU authorities, who launched an investigation. The nine current and former students who allegedly instigated the hazing subsequently turned themselves in. Two of the nine are 23-year-old men not currently enrolled in classes at the university. They both face felony battery charges, along with two current students, while the other five students face misdemeanor charges.
The current and former students charged in the incident allegedly subjected pledges to harmful and humiliating treatment that reportedly included urinating on them, forcing them to hold painful positions for hours at a time and making them lie down on broken glass. It is unclear how many pledges the alleged incident involved.
Louisiana passed an anti-hazing law approximately one year ago after the alcohol-related death of an 18-year-old student in connection with a similar incident. The executive director of the fraternity expressed support for this law in a statement and affirmed the organization’s commitment to the eradication of hazing.
It can be difficult to know when good-natured fun crosses the line into something more sinister, especially with the involvement of alcohol. Those facing criminal charges on account of alleged hazing may find it helpful to talk with an attorney.