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News Clips 02/11/2013
Photo prompts UCF to suspend fraternity
Source: CF News 13, 02/11/13
View Original Article
By Saul Saenz
A Facebook post has led to the suspension of a University of Central Florida fraternity for allegedly violating the school's hazing and drinking policies.
Sigma Chi received a letter Friday informing the fraternity they are suspended effective immediately after administrators discovered a Facebook post showing what appeared to be one person forced to drink while to others sat nearby looking sick.
The letter sent to the university’s Sigma Chi chapter tells the fraternity they cannot hold any activities during the suspension until a formal hearing.
A man who answered the door at the fraternity house Sunday said they would not be making any comments.
University spokesman Chad Binette said a photo initiated the investigation and the school would conduct a “thorough, timely and fair review of the allegations.”
The caption to the photo posted on Facebook read "Forcing a pledge to chug while two others puke in misery."
According to the suspension letter, the incident allegedly happened in January and Sigma Chi failed to comply with the university’s hazing and drinking policies.
The fraternity is charged with providing liquor to people underage, as well as “furnishing or causing to be furnished any alcoholic beverage to a person in a state of noticeable intoxication…"
"You should never force anyone to drink," said UCF student Kelsey Fredrickson.
This is not the first time the fraternity has been under fire for hazing and drinking.
Sigma Chi was the focus of an investigation in 2011 when 18-year-old Ann Marie Hefferin returned home from a Sigma Chi party and was found unconscious the next day.
It was later determined she died of a bacterial infection, but her death prompted a crackdown from the university on drinking and hazing on campus.
Despite that, Fredrickson said she has seen situations where someone appeared to have had too much to drink.
“Unfortunately, I think it is common,” she said.
One UCF student said the fraternity should not be suspended.
“Cause it's the people's decision to join a fraternity and if they're going join it, they're gonna know that's what they're getting into," said Patrick Jackson.
Sigma Chi will not be permitted to recruit until the suspension hearing, which is scheduled for Feb. 22.
Binette said the decision to suspend the fraternity was made based on the photo and more information provided to the university, but did not say what it was.