Illinois frat members charged in student hazing death
By The Associated Press
Published: Tuesday, Dec. 18, 2012, 7:44 a.m.
DEKALB, Ill. — Nearly two dozen fraternity members at Northern Illinois University have been charged with hazing-related counts after a freshman was found dead at their fraternity house following a night of drinking.
DeKalb police and prosecutors issued arrest warrants Monday for 22 members of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity in DeKalb. Five members are charged with felony hazing, while the other 17 members are facing misdemeanor hazing charges.
Phone messages and emails sent to local and national fraternity officials were not immediately returned.
The warrants were filed after David Bogenberger, 19, was found unresponsive at the fraternity house early on Nov. 2. The DeKalb County Coroner's Office said toxicology results found his blood alcohol content was about five times the legal limit for driving.
The coroner ruled Bogenberger's cause of death was cardiac arrhythmia, with alcohol intoxication as a contributing cause.
The DeKalb Police Department said its investigation found the fraternity hosted an unsanctioned event on Nov. 1 that wasn't registered with the university or the fraternity's national chapter.
“The event that night involved the pledges rotating between several rooms in the fraternity house, being asked a series of questions, and then being provided cups of vodka and other liquor to drink,” police said in a statement. “This resulted in the pledges drinking a large quantity of alcohol in about a two-hour time period.”
Police said several other pledges reported getting sick and passing out due to excessive alcohol consumption.
In addition to the charges, NIU said 31 students are accused of violating the school's code of conduct. Those students could face penalties ranging from reprimand to expulsion.
Bogenberger's family said in a statement that they appreciate law enforcement professionals who investigated his death and “seek accountability for a horrible event.”
“We have no desire for revenge,” the family said. “Rather, we hope that some significant change will come from David's death. Alcohol poisoning claims far too many young, healthy lives.
“We must realize that young people can and do die in hazing rituals. Alcohol-involved hazing and initiation must end.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Pirates sign free agent pitcher Volquez
- Pirates make inquiry into former Cy Young winner Johan Santana
- McCutchen proposes to girlfriend on DeGeneres show
- Trafford police arrest woman selling drugs for `shopping money’
- Police: Driver fell unconscious before Seton Hill bus crash
- Allegheny County budget committee OKs capital budget but no money for August Wilson Center
- Pirates sign Morton to 3-year extension
- First Niagara Bank in West End robbed
- Starkey: NHL stuck in stone age
- Water gushes unchecked in blighted Detroit areas, adding to financial distress
- Steelers defense’s rapid decline looks similar to that of Steel Curtain’s