One of two hazing complaints at LSU reportedly unfounded

Updated: Sep. 22, 2020 at 9:21 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (WAFB) - One of two hazing complaints made at LSU recently is reportedly unfounded, according to police records.

The LSU Police Department’s daily crime log shows the complaint made against Kappa Sigma is “unfounded.” The other complaint, made against Phi Kappa Psi, is still listed as active.

This week is National Hazing Prevention Week, but right now LSU is investigating a possible hazing incident.

Now, LSU is going through a strict process to figure out what exactly happened.

“So there are different things that we have to do to figure out what we can and police determine if it’s criminal or not, and then if it’s not then Student Advocacy and Accountability also conduct their investigation and they look at the violation of the code of student conduct,” said Ernie Ballard, director of LSU media relations.

LSU says its first step is to figure out if the whole fraternity was involved in the possible hazing or just a few members. This would determine if the university takes possible disciplinary action against the organization.

Documents from the police department show on Sept. 13 and 14, officers received complaints about possible hazing incidents at Phi Kappa Psi and Kappa Sigma.

The reports do not offer much detail, but indicate there are three potential victims. The reports also show that the complaints are against current fraternity members.

“So we want students in any organization to be comfortable with coming forward if they see anything like this. It’s a cultural shift that we have been making for years that we’ve talked about a few years ago… is shifting the culture and just showing that it’s wrong,” Ballard added.

The investigation comes around the anniversary of the 2017 hazing death of Max Gruver. His death prompted state lawmakers to tighten anti-hazing laws in Louisiana and sparked some of that cultural change at LSU.

Gruver’s family told WAFB in a statement:

We are heartbroken to have learned that on the eve and anniversary of our son, Max Gruver’s, tragic death as a result of hazing, two incidents of alleged hazing by LSU fraternities were reported. We are outraged and saddened that this criminal and dangerous behavior remains a part of the LSU experience but we thank the brave students that made these reports -- you likely saved a life and spared a family unbearable hardship. We implore LSU and the LSU police to take these allegations seriously and commit themselves to pursue the truth and prosecute all involved in hazing. The result of hazing is not brotherhood, but death and devastation.”

LSU now has a scorecard on its website showing the disciplinary records of fraternities and sororities on campus. The Gruver family sent LSU FlyHighMax t-shirts and wristbands to LSU’s Greek organizations to give out to students during anti-hazing week.

If a student does experience a hazing incident or witness one, they can call LSUPD at 225-578-3231 or they can submit a form online. If students or parents wish to see the past record of sororities and fraternities, they can click here.

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