In February of 2017, Timothy Piazza was a student at Penn State and a victim of fraternity hazing. Then 19 years old, Piazza was pledging to join Beta Theta Pi and required to attend a bid acceptance night at the fraternity’s house. He consumed large amounts alcohol due to being forced to participate in drinking games and hazing activities.
Piazza, having a blood alcohol level between .28 and .36, fell down the basement stairs of the fraternity house. Piazza suffered from a severe brain injury, skull fracture, and lacerated spleen due to the fall. Allegedly, there is video evidence that the members of the fraternity failed to call 911 or get any sort of medical attention to Piazza for over 11 hours. In fact, the hazing continued while Piazza was unconscious. By the time an ambulance arrived the next morning, Piazza was in critical condition and could not be saved. He succumbed to his injuries at the hospital three days later.
The parents of Piazza filed numerous claims against the members of the former fraternity’s executive board, pledge education committee, and recruitment committee for their alleged roles in planning the bid acceptance night and procuring alcohol for the event to serve to minors. Fraternity members were also named in the lawsuit for battery and failing to notify anyone or provide medical help. Most of the fraternity members escaped any form of criminal punishment.
When it comes to holding organizations such as fraternities and sororities responsible for hazing and endangering minors, there is usually a systematic process that is created to hide such illegal and dangerous activities. The criminal justice system may not always provide complete justice for the families who lose their children to hazing incidents.
If you or someone you know has been injured due to hazing or peer pressure at a fraternity or sorority or other college campus organization, Abraham, Watkins, Nichols, Agosto, Aziz & Stogner has the experience necessary to find justice. For a free consult with Abraham Watkins, call (713) 222-7211 or toll free at 713-222-7211.