College Hazing Defense
“Hazing often includes specific acts, such as encouraging students to engage in illegal or dangerous behavior.”
Students accused of hazing typically are accused of providing underage students with alcohol. Providing minors with alcohol is a separate offense from hazing, but a fraternity or sorority may face additional sanctions if they are found to have provided underage students with alcohol.
Facing Hazing Allegations? Take Action
Retaining a student defense lawyer is the first thing you should do upon receiving notice that your fraternity or sorority is being accused of hazing.
Every university and college will have its own procedures for investigating and sanctioning hazing activity. Every member who is accused of hazing should speak with a student defense lawyer. It may help to have a single student defense lawyer represent the fraternity or sorority facing accusations of hazing. Officers in fraternities and sororities may be liable for the conduct of members. Also, officers do not have to directly participate in the hazing activity to be found responsible.
Reviewing the student code of conduct and student handbook will help you determine how your university or college defines hazing.
Informing yourself of these sanctions associated with hazing will also help you become more informed about the facts of your case and the course of the investigation.
Possible Sanctions for Hazing Violations
Every university or college will have different procedures for sanctioning fraternities and sororities facing hazing allegations. The student code of conduct at your university or college is the best source of information regarding hazing and associated sanctions.
Some penalties are imposed on individuals who participated in the specific act of hazing. Universities and colleges impose sanctions on individual students who are found to have performed actions that constitute hazing.
Possible sanctions include
Criminal charges may also be filed by the state against a student depending on the specific facts of the case.
The fraternity, sorority, or other student organization itself may also face consequences due to hazing activity. Universities and colleges adopt different procedures for sanctioning fraternities and sororities, but the primary sanction is suspension of the fraternity or sorority. Universities and colleges also place fraternities and sororities on probation and restrict funding from the educational institution.
Hazing Accusations & Criminal Charges
Criminal charges may be filed against you by the state. Under some state penal codes hazing is a misdemeanor, while under other state penal codes hazing constitutes a felony. Criminal charges are more likely to occur if evidence suggests that a student committed:
Understanding the laws of the state in which the hazing activity has occurred will help you determine if you are likely to face criminal charges. Retaining a student defense lawyer will provide you with the best chance to defend yourself against any criminal charges the state brings against you individually.
Contact K Altman Law Today to Schedule a Consultation
A skilled student defense lawyer understands how universities and colleges investigate and sanction student organizations such as fraternities and sororities. Also, a student defense lawyer can coach you prior to any hearings you may have to participate in if the university or college does not permit you to have a lawyer present during the proceeding.
K Altman Law has decades of experience representing student organizations and individual students facing hazing accusations. Contact K Altman Law today to schedule a consultation.