Back in early April, Penn State brought the ax down on their Greek community, effectively killing fraternities and sororities for the foreseeable future.
The new regulations were implemented following an investigation against the Beta Theta Pi fraternity, specifically around the death of New Jersey sophomore Timothy Piazza. The school administration instituted a series of Greek Life restrictions, including a permanent ban of Beta Theta Pi, a ban on rush in fall 2017, and a stop to one of the greatest traditions PSU students enjoyed.
Piazza, 19, was a 2015 graduate of Hunterdon Central Regional High School in Readington Township who died after suffering a fall at the Beta Theta Pi house. Emergency services were not contacted until nearly 12 hours after the student fell down the steps at the fraternity house. Piazza was flown to the Hershey Medical Center, where he was later pronounced dead.
Now, an anonymous lawyer for Beta Theta Pi is saying the fraternity brothers were ‘unaware’ that Timothy Piazza was ‘in danger’ the night of the tragic accident.
According to defense lawyers, members of the Penn State fraternity are saying they thought the victim, who was a pledge at the time, was merely drunk and in no danger.
Via Philly Enquirer:
In their telling, according to four defense lawyers and other sources, fraternity members carried the 6’2”, 205-pound Piazza upstairs, put him on a couch, gave him water and kept an eye on him. Although he was intoxicated, he otherwise seemed fine; at one point, he made jokes. It wasn’t until the next morning when Piazza wouldn’t wake up that the fraternity members knew his condition was far more serious. That’s when they called for emergency help.
The fraternity members’ version of events comes as Centre County prosecutors are weighing possible criminal charges in Piazza’s death. “The fact-finding process is still underway and we need full answers as to how Tim Piazza lost his life simply by attending a bid acceptance party that was supposed to be dry,” District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller said in a statement. “Now is not the time to start minimizing the incidents that led to his untimely death because, criminal or not, they were simply wrong.”
The fraternity house was home to 39 members, all of whom had to relocate after spring break.