New Claims Made in Alleged Cover-Up of Penn State Frat Death: 'Make Sure the Pledges Keep Quiet'
Eight members of the Beta Theta Phi fraternity have been charged with involuntary manslaughter.
A fraternity brother who claims he witnessed the hazing death of a fraternity pledge at Penn State University is breaking the organization's so-called code of silence.
Eight members of the Beta Theta Phi fraternity have been charged with involuntary manslaughter following the death of 19-year-old Tim Piazza.
Ten other students also face charges of hazing and tampering with evidence.
Court documents allege Piazza, a freshman, and 13 other pledges were forced to run a gauntlet that involved finishing off a bottle of vodka, a bag of wine and cans of beer in just two minutes in February.
Piazza was so out of it that he fell down a flight of stairs at the frat house and landed in the basement where he laid for 12 hours of agony, according to the documents filed by authorities.
Not one person in the fraternity ever called 911, police say.
“As I walked into the room there were people surrounding him, kind of pointing and laughing and I asked what was happening, ‘Why is Tim on the couch?’ And they were, like, 'He's fine. He's just had too much to drink,'" Fraternity brother Kordel Davis told Good Morning America Monday.
Host Robin Roberts asked why no one thought to call 911 and whether he thought to remove himself from the situation.
“I said, 'He needs to be at the hospital right now.' I said, ‘We should call 911. Get him in an ambulance,’ I’m screaming,” Davis said. Davis has not been charged by authorities.
Authorities say surveillance video from inside the fraternity house shows Timothy lying unconscious while the fraternity members "shook him, slapped him, attempted to prop up his limp body and poured water on him."
When they realized Piazza was dead, a cover-up allegedly began, authorities claim.
A fraternity vice president reportedly texted another member, "Make sure the pledges keep quiet about last night."
"They know," he allegedly replied.
Piazza's grieving parents said their son's death should be a call to action.
“This was a preventable tragedy," his heartbroken father, James, told Inside Edition. "It should not have been allowed to happen.”
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