FAMU Marching Band Suspended for One More Year for Student’s Hazing Death
The troubled Florida A&M marching band is being suspended for at least another school year as university officials try to sort out the mess left in the wake of the hazing death of a drum major in November of 2011.
Investigations into the famed marching band revealed a program that tolerated — and in some cases, encouraged — a long-standing tradition of hazing. Eleven band members face felony charges in the FAMU hazing death of the drum major and the long-time band director retired after it was revealed that nearly 100 band members were not even students at the university when the hazing death occurred — including three members who have been charged with felony hazing in relation to the death.
FAMU president James Ammon told Associated Press, “There is no question the band must be restructured, there are measures we feel we must take.”
A lawyer for the family of the hazing victim said that they were “relieved” when school officials decided to keep the suspension intact for another year. The mother of the victim has gone on record saying that she thinks the band should be completely disbanded. The family has already indicated it is going to sue the university for wrongful death.
The attorney told AP that although the family is somewhat relieved that the university is taking steps to address problems with the program, “They are disappointed that all of this could have been avoided if FAMU had paid attention to what was going on in that band for the last few years.”
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