Syracuse suspends 18 frat members after second video released
Over a dozen members of the Theta Tau fraternity at Syracuse University have been suspended after a second video of lewd behavior emerged over the weekend.
Eighteen students were pulled “from academic participation” after a pair of videos showed them taking part in offensive skits, the latest of which showed a mock assault on a handicapped person, Department of Public Safety Chief Bobby Maldonado said in a statement Sunday night.
The decision was made out of “an abundance of caution and ongoing concern for our campus community,” the safety official added.
“Alternative class and study arrangements will be made for these students as the judicial process moves forward,” he said.
The Central New York school has condemned the contents of the first video, which Chancellor Kent Syverud said in a separate statement displayed “extreme and egregious racism, sexism, ableism, anti-Semitism and homophobia.”
The second recording showed frat members pretending to sexually assault a disabled person.
“I ask all of us who care about our community and its values to reaffirm them by emphatically rejecting all this video represents,” Syverud said of the second recording. “There is absolutely no place at Syracuse University for tolerance of this behavior.”
Maldonado, the public safety chief, said all 18 suspended students were present at the time of the recordings.
He warned that more students could be “implicated in the coming days.”
Theta Tau was already expelled from Syracuse after the first video emerged.
The chapter apologized for its contents, which its members tried to play off as satire of a conservative frat brother.
“This event was never intended to be centered around racism or hate,” the chapter said in a statement.
“It was a satirical sketch of an uneducated, racist, homophobic, misogynist, sexist, ableist and intolerant person.”
The Daily Orange obtained the videos, originally displayed on the frat’s secret Facebook group, and posted them on its website. Syracuse University doesn’t plan to release them to the public.
“It is imperative that we preserve the evidence to be used in individual conduct cases,” Maldonado said. “In addition, my office will not be party to the distribution of this hateful and hurtful content.”