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Serious Charges Are Dismissed for Penn State Fraternity Members in Pledge’s Death

A judge on Friday dismissed charges of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault against eight Pennsylvania State University fraternity members, who still face various other charges related to the death of Timothy Piazza following an initiation event, The Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

In May, 18 members of the Beta Theta Pi fraternity were charged for not helping Mr. Piazza in February after he consumed toxic amounts of alcohol during a fraternity initiation ceremony, and suffered several falls. Eight members and the chapter faced involuntary-manslaughter charges.

Now 14 fraternity brothers are expected to go to trial on lesser charges, like furnishing alcohol to minors and hazing. Four fraternity members had all of their charges dismissed.

During the initiation ceremony, Mr. Piazza fell several times and hit his head. He also had a blood-alcohol content of nearly 0.40 percent. Fraternity members who found him at the bottom of the basement steps carried him upstairs, poured liquid on his body, and slapped him.

Fraternity members called 911 the following morning after trying for 40 minutes to wake him up.

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