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.
On April 9, 2017, Nicholas Mauricio was taken to Tallahassee's Memorial Hospital by fraternity brothers from Florida State's Phi Tau chapter of Alpha Epsilon Pi. Mauricio was going in and out of consciousness, he had a golf ball-sized bump on the back of his head, and there was blood running down his mouth from a cracked tooth. The doctors soon realized that Mauricio was suffering from a skull fracture and multiple brain bleeds.
In the last year, the hazing ritual of freshman pledges has sparked a national outcry. Greek organizations-who are largely self-governed-have faced criticism for turning a blind eye to the rampant binge drinking culture on campuses. Just last year, Texas State University in San Marcos, TX suspended all Greek-activities after a freshman pledge died from binge drinking during a fraternity's hazing incident. This time, the Alpha Sigma Phi chapter at the University of Arizona is the latest culprit.
Blake Novacek, son of former Dallas Cowboys tight end Jay Novacek, is suing Oklahoma University-based fraternity Beta Theta Pi and affiliated organizations for significant injuries he sustained after he was hit by a baseball bat in a hazing ritual. According to the lawsuit, Novacek is seeking monetary relief of more than $150,000 from Beta Theta Pi, Beta Theta Pi Corporation of Oklahoma, the Gamma Phi (OU) Chapter of Beta Theta Pi, as well as Shane Muselmann and Gavin Martindale, two members of the Gamma Phi Chapter who were allegedly involved in the incident.