Update: WCTV Eyewitness News
June 13, 2017
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Florida State University's Zeta Beta Tau fraternity chapter has been suspended for 6 years following an investigation into hazing allegations.
FSU Assistant Director of Communications Amy Farnum-Patronis says the sanction ZBT received is actually considered “dismissal” because of the time period.
The investigation into the alleged hazing began in Fall 2016. University officials say students who were attempting to join the fraternity were participating in an unauthorized pledging process. The students were reportedly subjected to "forced consumption of food, alcohol, and drugs; line-ups; forced participation in activities; calisthenics; sleep deprivation; and mental intimidation" as well as physical violence and underage access to alcohol.
Farnum-Patronis says, effective immediately, FSU's ZBT chapter is prohibited from all university activities and may not function or participate in any events on or off campus. The fraternity is also forbidden from hosting chapter meetings, participating in intramurals, or using FSU facilities.
We've also learned that members of the fraternity are facing criminal charges in connection to the hazing investigation.
Florida State University issued the following statement in response to the ZBT suspension:
"Florida State University does not tolerate hazing among any student(s) or student organization. Some resources and information regarding FSU’s anti-hazing education efforts and other university initiatives to prevent hazing are provided below."
Hazing can be reported online here: https://cm.maxient.com/reportingform.php?FloridaStateUniv&layout_id=5
By: Lanetra Bennett
May 25, 2017
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- FSU Police are investigating claims of hazing from FSU's Zeta Beta Tau.
The fraternity appeared before the Office of Student Rights and Responsibilities Thursday for a hearing to answer to allegations of hazing pledges, including forcing them to drink alcohol.
FSU student Brennan Brinkley said, "I don't really find it surprising that there's hazing going on. I think everyone kind of accepts it and everyone knows that it happens. But, that doesn't mean it should be accepted. It doesn't mean that it should be a part of our school's culture."
A formal decision letter will be sent to the student organization within ten (10) business days from the conclusion of the hearing. This time limit may be extended if additional consideration of evidence and deliberation is required.
Potential outcomes of the hearing could include a written or spoken reprimand, suspension, or dismissal from campus.
FSU says, "Florida State University does not tolerate hazing among any student(s) or student organization."
Ethan Brown said, "It makes me disgusted, honestly. I love this university with all my heart. But, for anyone to go out of their way just to hurt others to kind of gain something out of it, to kind of keep, quote unquote tradition going or anything like that, is just, it's wrong."
FSU Police say prosecution is pending, and the department has turned the criminal investigation over to the state's attorney's office.
The fraternity's headquarters released the following statement:
"Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity is working with Florida State University to address allegations of misconduct in the Zeta Alpha Chapter. Zeta Beta Tau Fraternity and Zeta Alpha Chapter are fully cooperating with the investigation by the Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities. Due to the ongoing investigation, the Fraternity will have no further comment."