Hazing News

Miscellaneous 2004 hazing incidents by Hank Nuwer and Kate Lockwood

Southern Illinois University – Carbondale
Pi Kappa Alpha
Pledge death
April 4, 2004

Pi Kappa Alpha pledge Brent E. Johnson, 19, drowned while camping with other members.  The incident has been labeled non hazing-related, but evidence of hazing throughout the fraternity’s past led officials to permanently suspend the chapter.

Southern Arkansas University
Sigma Tau Gamma
Pledge beating
April 16, 2004

Members of the Delta Iota chapter reportedly beat one of its pledges, Ty Keith, 19.  Keith was hospitalized for 11 days following the incident.  The university has suspended the fraternity for a period of five or more years.

Wabash College
Sigma Chi
Alcohol-related hazing
October, 15, 2004 (reported)

Paul Ackerman, 18, reports that he was forced to eat and drink on command as a pledge.  Ackerman is filing a lawsuit after ending up in the emergency room after being forced to drink alcohol.

Fisk University
Kappa Alpha Psi
Pledge beating
September 2004

A potential new member of fraternity was reportedly paddled to the extent that he was unable to walk right after the incident.  As a result, Fisk University has taken new steps in preventing another occurrence by forbidding Greek organizations to have any parties or recruitment events for the school year.

Oklahoma University
Sigma Chi
Alcohol-related death
September 30, 2004

Blake Adam Hammontree died after drinking large quantities of alcohol.  Hammontree had a BAC of 0.42. He was found at the Sigma Chi house.  Other Sigma Chi pledges admitted to being pressured to drink by other members.

Arizona State University
Pi Kappa Alpha
Pledge whipping
March 15, 2004

Anonymous photos show Pi Kappa Alpha pledges being severely whipped while holding pieces of lime in their mouths.  A professional stripper may have also been present.  Pi Kappa Alpha’s national headquarters has temporarily suspended the chapter while investigation continues.

University of Maryland
Sigma Alpha Epsilon
Suspected hazing
October 14, 2004 (reported)

The chapter has been charged with allegations of hazing.  The university’s Office of Judicial Programs has banned many of the chapter’s Greek activities until further notice.

University of Colorado
Chi Psi
Pledge death
September 17, 2004

Chi Psi pledge Lynn Gordon Bailey, 18, died of alcohol poisoning during a pledge event.  He was found at the chapter house with inked marks on his body after other members had written on him.  Chapter pledges were reportedly forced to drink the large quantities of alcohol, though spokeswoman Julie Brooks argues they were not.  The chapter was closed.

Emory University
Kappa Alpha Psi
Pledge physical and mental hazing
April 15, 2004 (reported)

Raymond McKoy sent a letter to numerous news organizations describing the physical and mental abuse that he and his fellow pledges endured.  The incidents included physical beatings, menial tasks, sexual hazing and mental abuse.

By Hank Nuwer

Hank Nuwer is the Indiana-based author of Hazing: Destroying Young Lives; 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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