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Day of Reckoning: Accused in Robert Champion Band hazing death at FAMU could get record sentencing in a hazing death

Jessie Baskin, 22, faces a judge’s sentencing today in the death of Robert Champion. Historically, judges have threatened long sentences during pre-sentencing meetings, but no sentence in a college hazing death has ever resulted in more than a two-year felony conviction. The judge in this case has said nine years is possible. My guess is that the actual sentence will be between a year and a day for manslaughter and three years. Five years would send a harsh message. With all the other defendants in the FAMU hazing death getting light punishments, I’m expecting more in the way of a lighter punishment for Baskin. –Hank Nuwer, Moderator.

By Hank Nuwer

Hank Nuwer is the Indiana-based author of Broken Pledges: The Deadly Rite of Hazing, High School Hazing, Wrongs of Passage and The Hazing Reader. 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 new book is Hazing: Destroying Young Lives from Indiana University Press.

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