Tulane Greek organizations face hazing allegations

Domenic Mesa, News Editor

Tulane Greek organizations continue to be under scrutiny as TUPD investigates allegations of hazing. Earlier this semester, six Greek organizations were placed on interim suspension due to non-compliance with COVID-19 regulations. 

According to a TUPD police report, an initial allegation of hazing was made on March 22, 2021. Additional information was obtained after a follow-up investigation on March 23. The report highlights that the officer “located the alleged victim and the victim advised she was pressured to consume alcohol by her ‘big sister’.” Following this allegation, TUPD attempted to interview the aforementioned “big sister,” but they retained a lawyer prior to answering any questions. On March 29, TUPD obtained an arrest warrant for the “big sister.”

Another instance of alleged hazing was reported on March 23. A TUPD report details allegations of hazing stemming from the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority. No details were provided in this instance. 

A third instance of hazing was investigated by TUPD officers on March 29. Two individuals were “suspected of hazing potential members of the Alpha Epsilon Pi fraternity.” One of the individuals, described only as “Person Of Interest 1,” denied the claims levied against them. Officers were unable to contact the second POI.

TUPD Chief of Police Kirk Bouyelas declined to comment and referred The Hullabaloo to Executive Director of Public Relations Mike Strecker.

Strecker said that members of additional Greek organizations, Sigma Delta Tau and Kappa Alpha Theta, were found to be in violation of Louisiana’s hazing laws.

Tulane University has no tolerance for hazing and complies with all municipal, state and federal legislation, including the Louisiana hazing statutes,” Strecker said. “Reports of hazing are shared with law enforcement, in compliance with applicable state laws. Students suspected of hazing also face disciplinary action, which might include suspension or expulsion from the university. Several recent investigations into hazing allegations were determined to be unfounded. However, members of Sigma Delta Tau and of Kappa Alpha Theta were charged with violating Louisiana’s Hazing Law. We are deeply disturbed by these charges. Every incoming student at Tulane completes mandatory hazing prevention training. New members of all fraternities and sororities, as well as officers of these groups, receive additional training on hazing prevention.”

Those found guilty of criminal hazing are fined a maximum of $10,000 and imprisoned for a maximum of five years. 

“I have heard about the hazing … and as a student and a member of greek life I find it disgusting,” Peyton Jernigan, Phi director of Phi Mu, said. “We as a chapter have a zero tolerance policy on hazing.”

Director of Fraternity and Sorority Programs Liz Schafer was unavailable for comment.

The Panhellenic Council was unavailable for comment. 

To report a hazing concern, students can access this resource.