Hazing News

All eyes in the courtroom on Tim Bream: PSU Collegian reports. Will he be held in contempt?

Here is the link to the Collegian


After District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller told the courtroom she would not be calling any more witnesses to the stand, the defense asked to call one of their own: Bream, the Penn State Director of Athletic Training Services and Head Football Athletic Trainer.

Judge Allen Sinclair sustained the request of the defense despite Parks Miller contesting the decision.

“I can’t deny you the right to question him,” Sinclair said to Leonard Ambrose, the defense attorney representing Joseph Sala.

According to Parks Miller, Bream’s testimony would serve invaluable in the courtroom as Pennsylvania law only allows the defense to call witnesses to the stand who would negate the crimes of their client.

“If he was there that night, we have the right to question him,” Ambrose said.

Holding the position of “senior house manger,” and live-in adviser, Ambrose said Bream knew of the events taking place at bid acceptance, therefore giving the go-ahead for “conduct that caused extreme indifference to human life.”

Ambrose said evidence shows Bream held a meeting with members of the executive committee to outline the events that the fraternity was planning — this would include the rush events that occurred in Jan. 2017 and pledge acceptance in 2017.

“It underlines the element of reckless endanger,” Ambrose said.

Parks Miller said Bream would not be able to diminish the crimes of the sixteen former Beta Theta Pi members, and would likely plea the fifth — the right to not personally incriminate himself — on the stand.

The defense pointed out that Bream was not easy to get a hold of today, as they tried to serve him with his subpoena on multiple occasions.

Private investigator Jeffrey Johnson took the stand to lay out the process he went through trying to get Bream to the the court.

Johnson obtained a subpoena with the purpose of serving Bream and was then escorted to the Lasch Building by Penn State Police. However, Bream was said to be “on vacation.”

While trying to serve the subpoena in the Lasch Building, the staff did not cooperate, denying to give him their names or accept the subpoena.

“I think he was hiding in the Lasch Building, so I couldn’t serve him personally,” Johnson said.

The subpoena was left with employees at the Lasch Building and an attorney at Penn State University, according to Johnson.

Due to these complications, Ambrose has asked the court to hold Bream in contempt.

By Hank Nuwer

Journalist Hank Nuwer is the Alaska author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. In April of 2024, the Alaska Press Club awarded him first place in the Best Columnist division and Best Humorist, second place.

He has written articles or columns on hazing for the Sunday Times of India, Toronto Globe & Mail, Harper's Magazine, Orlando Sentinel, The Chronicle of Higher Education and the New York Times Sunday Magazine. His current book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press. He is married to Malgorzata Wroblewska Nuwer of Warsaw, Poland and Fairbanks, Alaska. Nuwer is a former columnist for the Greenville (Ohio)Early Bird and former managing editor of the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner in Alaska.
Nuwer was named the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists columnist of the year in 2021 for his “After Darke” column in the Early Bird. He also won third place for the column in 2022 from the Indiana chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists. He and his wife Gosia, recently of Union City, Ind., have owned 20 acres in Alaska for many years. “The move is a sort-of coming home for us,” said Nuwer. As a journalist, he’s written about the Alaskan Iditarod sled-dog race and other Alaska topics. Read his musings in his blog at Real Alaska Daily-- and in his weekly column "Far from Randolph" in the Winchester Star-Gazette of Randolph County, Indiana.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.