A district attorney’s office in Pennsylvania said it will reinstate most of the charges against 11 members at a now-nonoperational Penn State Fraternity, which were dismissed for incidents in connection with a sophomore pledge’s death earlier this year, according to Fox News.
The incident comes after Tim Piazza, 19, fell down a set of stairs, suffering fatal injuries after prosecutors said he and other pledges were forced to drink nearly a half-gallon bottle of vodka. The pledges were then forced to run a “gauntlet” of booze-drinking stations.
District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller of Centre County said their office is refiling criminal charges which include felony aggravated assault and involuntary manslaughter.
This comes after District Justice Allen Sinclair dismissed the felony charges back in September, filed against eight Beta Thea Pi fraternity members, according to a press release referred to in the Fox News report.
The judge did not dismiss lesser charges against them and six others, but he did throw out other charges against four of the fraternity members.
This new development means, if convicted, those defendants could be sentenced to several years in prison.
Furthermore, no new charges were filed against two members who waived their preliminary hearings against four others who faced single counts which were thrown out or against one defendant who had 28 of 52 charges dismissed who is accused of buying alcohol for the Beta Theta Pi bid acceptance night party, according to Fox News.
Pennlive.com called the district attorney’s refiling of charges “an unusual move.”
The district attorney’s office also asked Centre County President Judge Pamela Ruest to assign a new district judge to the case, claiming the former judge, Allen Sinclair, made errors when he dismissed charges.
Check back with CrimeOnline as additional details become available.
[Feature Photo: Family Handout]