Last week in northeast Pennsylvania, five former fraternity members were arraigned on murder charges for their participation in the brutal hazing ritual that killed a New York City college student in 2013.
5 Suspects Charged With Murder in NYC Student's Hazing Death
On Thursday, 26-year-old Kenny Kwan, 24-year-old Charles Lai, 22-year-old Raymond Lam, 23-year-old Sheldon Wong and 23-year-old Daniel Li -- identified by police as the most culpable of 37 suspects in the case -- were arraigned in the death of Baruch College freshman Chun "Michael" Deng.
According to police, fraternity members at Pi Delta Psi, an Asian American fraternity, forced Deng to participate in a hazing ritual in which he was tackled repeatedly, then tried to cover it up after he suffered a brain injury.
The authorities said that Mr. Deng, who was known as Michael, was blindfolded and forced to wear a backpack weighted with sand while taking blows from fraternity members as he tried to cross a frozen yard during a weekend retreat in the Poconos.
The fraternity members pummeled Mr. Deng harder than the other pledges because he had resisted them, according to a grand jury report. He was knocked unconscious and carried inside, feeling, one member later told the police, like a "dead weight," the report said.
Instead of immediately seeking help, according to the grand jury report, the fraternity members used their cellphones for searches using phrases like “concussion can’t wake up,” and called a national fraternity leader, who is accused of telling them to hide any possessions identifying the fraternity.
After getting knocked unconscious, it was another hour before the fraternity members drove Deng to the hospital, where he died. This was fatal poor judgement on every possible level.
The five suspects were each charged with third-degree murder, involuntary manslaughter, aggravated and simple assault, hindering apprehension, hazing and conspiracy. Lai and Kwan also face drug charges. Pi Delta Psi itself is also charged with murder, and 32 other suspects face less serious charges.
More here: 5 Facing Murder Charges in Baruch Hazing Death Appear in Court