Fraternity activity suspended at Mizzou, Kentucky after student hospitalization, death


(NewsNation Now) — The University of Missouri suspended all fraternity activities Wednesday after a freshman was found unresponsive and taken to a hospital after a party.

An initial investigation found that several members of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity were believed to have consumed significant amounts of alcohol during the party, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported.

No other details were available, including the condition of the student.

A crowd of about 200 people gathered late Wednesday outside the Phi Gamma Delta house, with some chanting “Stop the hazing. We want justice,” The Columbia Missourian reported.

The incident at the Missouri fraternity comes on the heels of the death of a first-year University of Kentucky student after being found unresponsive at a fraternity house.

The Coroner’s Office said the student died from “presumed alcohol toxicity.”

Fayette County Coroner Gary Ginn identified the student as Thomas “Lofton” Hazelwood, 18, of Henderson. Toxicology test results are pending.

The student was a member of FarmHouse Fraternity. The university suspended activities at the fraternity while Hazelwood’s death is being investigated, University President Eli Capilouto and Vice President for Student Success Kirsten Turner said in a message to the campus community Tuesday evening.

University spokesman Jay Blanton said campus police were called to the fraternity around 6:20 p.m. Monday. The student was taken to a hospital, but attempts to revive him were unsuccessful, Blanton said.

“Foul play is not suspected, but police are investigating the circumstances of his death,” Blanton said.

According to a study at the University of Dayton, 55% of all students involved in clubs, teams or organizations have experienced some kind of hazing.

The study also found that hazing incidents at Greek life organizations can result in serious injuries, or even death, especially if alcohol is involved.

These are four universities where a pattern of hazing assaults and other serious incidents have led to officials suspending Greek organizations. They include the University of Kentucky and the University of Missouri. Also on that list, Ohio University where the school suspended a fraternity for four years over hazing violations. And in late September, Northwestern University suspended all fraternity activities.

Magnifying the problem of hazing is that students don’t often inform officials when it happens.

In the Dayton study, 36% of students said they wouldn’t report hazing because they felt like there was just simply no one that they could tell.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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