FSU students react to charges against fraternity members

By: Tiffany Lewis | WCTV Eyewitness News
January 17, 2018

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) -- Students at Florida State University have mixed feelings about the arrests made in connection to a fraternity pledge's death.

Nine fraternity brothers are being charged with felony hazing in the November death of Pi Kappa Phi pledge Andrew Coffey.

"It's going to be a difficult situation for all parties involved. All nine families that are being prosecuted, as well as the family who suffered the death," said FSU student John Powell.

Some students view the charges as a good move.

"Well Greek life in general is at fault," said student Shakur Pierre. "But the fact that nine people specifically are facing charges is a step in the right direction."

"Obviously Andrew can't speak for himself now, so the blame had to be put somewhere," said student Holly Dennis. "And someone needed to pay for what happened to him."

But, some students think the charges are more complex than meets the eye.

"Some of them are just the executive board so they have liabilities due to the way the fraternity is structured if and when hazing allegations happen," said Powell. "So it's not even that they were there personally, it's just the fact that they have liability given their position in the fraternity."

Despite the mixed feelings, most students say they trust the process.

"I do trust that the police and the prosecutors are doing their best to make sure the incident is handled properly," said student Brock Jones. "I definitely trust what they're doing with it."

They all say they hope that this tragedy can bring about positive change.

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