Baruch's Pi Delta Psi Frat Kicked off Campus Following Pledge's Death

Tuesday, 17 Dec 2013 10:45 AM

By Alexandra Ward

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Pi Delta Psi, the Baruch College fraternity accused of contributing to the death of a freshman pledge last weekend during a gauntlet-style hazing ritual, has been booted from the New York City school.

The national office of the Asian-American cultural fraternity said that the game that fatally injured 19-year-old Chun Hsien Deng during a retreat in Pennsylvania's Pocono Mountains Dec. 8 had been previously banned.

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"Our early understanding is that this incident occurred at an unsanctioned event that was strictly prohibited by our organization," Andy Meng, national president of the fraternity, said in a statement. "Baruch Colony has violated the rules and values of our organization, including our strict no-hazing policy."

Deng reportedly sustained major head injuries during a game known as the Gauntlet, which took place one night during a weekend retreat in the Pocono Mountains earlier this month, according to a police search warrant affidavit obtained by NBC News.

On that night, 30 or so Pi Delta Psi members reportedly blindfolded four freshman pledges, including Deng, strapped heavy sandbags to their backs, and instructed them to make their way from a designated starting point to their fraternity "big brothers" while other members tackled them.

Deng was injured at some point during the game, but was not taken to the hospital until more than hour after he was knocked unconscious, according to the affidavit. He was placed on life support and died on Dec. 9.

Pi Delta Psi members initially told police Deng hit his head while wrestling in the yard, but later admitted that they had been playing a ritual hazing game called the Gauntlet.

No charges have been filed yet against any members of Pi Delta Psi but prosecutors say it’s highly likely that charges will soon be filed, NBC News reported. The brothers reportedly attempted to cover-up the fact that they were on a fraternity retreat.

"While at the hospital, [Charles Lai, Deng's pledge big brother] made a phone call, using his cellular phone, to a male at the residence and told him to dispose of all fraternity memorabilia and items," the affidavit reads.

It was discovered that the brothers brought Deng inside the house, changed his clothes, and Googled his symptoms before calling 911 or seeking medical help.

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