Phi Delta Theta national headquarters has formally suspended its Louisiana State University chapter after an alleged fraternity hazing incident.
Police are investigating the death of 18-year-old LSU freshman Maxwell Gruver as a possible result of fraternity hazing as hospital tests found a ‘highly elevated’ BAC in the deceased teen’s body.
University spokesman Ernie Ballard said Gruver, an 18-year-old LSU freshman from Roswell, Georgia, died on Thursday, September 14, after he was taken to a Baton Rouge hospital to be treated for an unspecified “medical emergency.”
According to a statement from East Baton Rouge Parish Coroner Beau Clark’s office, further blood and urine tests also detected the presence of marijuana in the Gruver’s body. While preliminary autopsy results found no internal or external trauma, tests did find ‘marked cerebral and pulmonary edema’, which is swelling in the brain and lungs.
Phi Delta Theta General Headquarters said in a statement that the LSU chapter was suspended based on the “preliminary findings of an investigation that uncovered enough information to conclude that some chapter members were in violation of established risk management policies, including our Alcohol-Free Housing policy.”
via New York Times:
“The death of Maxwell Gruver was tragic and untimely,” F. King Alexander, the university’s president, said in the statement. “There are allegations that Maxwell’s death was related to hazing, but I want to emphasize that this is an evolving situation.”
Mr. Alexander said that all fraternity and sorority activities at the school were suspended indefinitely. Recruitment at fraternities and sororities there ended last month.
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The national office of Phi Delta Theta announced on Thursday evening that it had suspended the university’s chapter, adding that its officials had been working with the authorities in Louisiana. The office said that Mr. Gruver, who was from Roswell, Ga., was a prospective member at that chapter.
“We’re committed to investigating this situation thoroughly,” Bob Biggs, the chief executive at Phi Delta Theta, said. “The chapter and any individuals who are found to have violated our policies will be held accountable.”
Gruver, who graduated from Blessed Trinity Catholic School, had not yet pledged with the fraternity. All Greek activities at LSU have been suspended indefinitely.