Ohio States Suspends Three Fraternities for Hazing

Administration officials at Ohio State University announced the suspension of a trio of fraternities as the school continues to deal with the immense fallout from a sex abuse scandal abuse scandal in the university’s athletic department involving nearly 300 student victims. The latest round of lawsuits in mammoth sex abuse scandal were filed at the end of 2019

The Ohio State University fraternities that were suspended by the school include Phi Delta Theta, until August 2024. Zeta Beta Tau and Sigma Pi were suspended until August 2023. Specific hazing violations were lodged individually against the three different fraternities.

Phi Delta Theta was accused of subjecting new members to what was called line-ups. Despite the somewhat innocuous term, line-ups involved forcing new members of the fraternity to submit to holding stress positions for extended periods of time. These punishing stress positions included “the rack,” “the beetle,” and wall-sits, all of which were physically painful. Other hazing allegations were lodged against the Phi Delta, including forcing members to stay isolated inside the chapter house for multiple consecutive days without access to phones or other devices and their wallets.

Allegations lodged against Zeta Beta Tau included what appears to be forcing underage members to consume inordinate amounts of alcohol. The complaint against the Zeta house included a situation in which one student consumed so much alcohol that he experienced a severe medical reaction which necessitated in the involvement of law enforcement.

Finally, the allegations against the Sigma Pi fraternity included misuse of alcohol, including alcohol being made available to underage members. Like the Phi Delta Theta fraternity, Sigma Pi also forced new members to participate in strenuous physical activities, including holding stress positions for inordinate periods of time. These hazing elements included wall-sits.

Although the announcement of the suspensions sounds ominous, on some level the penalties imposed by the university might be considered less severe than anticipated. The fraternities will be able to carry on with many of their typical activities. With that noted, during the suspension period the fraternities will not be able to use on-campus resources for their activities. They are also prohibited from soliciting or recruiting new members as the result of hazing activities during the suspension period.

Physical, Emotional, Psychological, and Other Injuries from Hazing

A great deal of attention is paid to the physical harm caused by hazing. Sadly, ever year college and university students suffer serious and even fatal physical injuries as a result of hazing. With that said, college and university students victimized by hazing can also experience what prove to be serious emotional and psychological injuries. Fraternity hazing can result in victims of the process suffering from depression, anxiety, and PTSD. These emotional and psychological conditions can persist for an extended period of time and severely impair a young person’s overall quality of life and wellbeing.

Other types of injuries, losses, and damages associated with hazing victimization include:

  • Decline in grades and impairment of academic performance
  • Relationship problem with family, significant others, and friends
  • Erosion of trust
  • Property damage or loss
  • Damage to reputation
  • Feelings of guilt and shame

Legal Rights in the Aftermath of Hazing

If you are the victim of fraternity hazing, you have important legal rights that you must protect. (The holds true for sorority hazing as well as having associated with college athletic programs.) As an aside, parents of college students oftentimes are involved in the process of assisting a young man or woman in protecting his or her legal rights in the aftermath of a harmful hazing incident or incidents.

Every state has what is known as a statute of limitations, a law that limits the timeframe in which you can bring a lawsuit for injuries, damages, and losses associated with hazing. The failure to file a fraternity hazing lawsuit (or sorority hazing lawsuit) within the time period established in a specific state can prevent an injured person from pursuing a claim. A victim must be proactive in consulting with a fraternity hazing lawyer, like a member of the legal team at The Doan Law Firm.

An initial consultation with a Doan Law Firm fraternity hazing lawyer can be scheduled by calling (800) 349-0000 any time of the day or night. A nationwide law practice, the Doan firm has offices from coast to coast. In addition, a virtual appointment can be arranged online.

There is no charge for an initial consultation and case evaluation with a fraternity hazing lawyer. The Doan Law Firm makes an attorney fee promise to its clients. A client pays no attorney fee unless the firm wins a favorable settlement or judgment.