Baruch Hazing: Death Of Freshman Results In Legal Consequences — Could Fraternities Be Outlawed?

At Manhattan’s Baruch College, a hazing death could be the beginning of a chain reaction of unwanted consequences for fraternities. Five members of Pi Delta Psi have been charged with criminal misconduct, and debates may begin over whether fraternities should be allowed to continue.

In December 2013, one such hazing ritual ended in the death of freshman Chun Hsien “Michael” Deng. He was among a group of pledges who were allegedly taken to a Tunkhannock Township house in Pennsylvania on the weekend, given weighted backpacks, and beaten by senior members. Police say Deng had lost consciousness during the ritual, and the students had tried to cover it up, as reported by Fox News. He was then taken to a hospital, where he died.

Police Chief Chris Wagner told the press that Deng had been singled out and treated more harshly than the rest for allegedly not cooperating.

Attorneys for some of the students involved said they were charged with hazing and hindering apprehension, according to the Wall Street Journal. Pi Delta Psi did not respond to requests for comment.

The Baruch hazing death could mark the end of fraternities, with the rise of criminal activity as a form of hazing rituals. In a previous report by the Inquisitr, a high school football team had been accused of rape, while their coach, George Najjar, had allegedly done nothing to stop it. The ritual allegedly involved freshmen having fingers inserted in them while the lights were turned off.

Another more recent hazing reported by the Inquisitr involved a fraternity at the University of Florida. Sigma Nu had been recorded on video chanting about rape.

Consequences have been provided each time a hazing ritual involving illegal or offensive activities hit the public, and Manhattan’s Baruch College may be the first to take proactive steps toward a solution. Such steps include banning the fraternity and stopping all further hazing rituals.

Laetitia Metellus, 20, a senior in the University of New York system, expressed her dismay at hearing about the Baruch hazing death.

“Everybody’s kind of eerie about Greek life now. I wouldn’t participate knowing what happened.”

Fraternity hazings appear to be getting worse with time, and New York may only be the first wave in what may be the end of such groups. Could there soon be a federal law prohibiting fraternities and hazing rituals?

After the Baruch hazing death in Manhattan, the future of fraternities could be in jeopardy.

[Image via Math Tutoring NYC]