HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS/CNN) – The Pennsylvania Attorney General is appealing a court ruling that dismissed involuntary manslaughter charges against eight fraternity members in the hazing death of a Penn State student last year.
The notice of appeal was filed Thursday after a judge threw out the charges last month.
“In the interest of justice for the Piazza family, our office today filed a notice of appeal with respect to charges against eight of the defendants in this case,” said Joe Grace, spokesman for Attorney General Shapiro.
Nineteen-year-old sophomore Timothy Piazza died last February after drinking large quantities of alcohol during his first night of pledging at Beta Theta Pi fraternity.
The frat was supposed to be alcohol-free, but surveillance video showed Piazza was given at least 18 drinks in 82 minutes by members of the fraternity.
Surveillance video showed Piazza was given at least 18 drinks in 82 minutes by members of the fraternity. His blood alcohol level went “from a zero to as high as a .36,” the grand jury report said, almost five times the legal limit.
Other security camera video played during a preliminary hearing last June detailed his harrowing final hours, showing him falling several times and staggering through the fraternity house before disappearing near basement stairs, where police say he plummeted 15 steps and lost consciousness.
Despite his apparent distress for 12 hours, the grand jury report said, the fraternity brothers did little to help him.
Involuntary manslaughter charges in the case have been rejected twice by the judge. Some members of the fraternity still face charges, including conspiracy, hazing and alcohol violations.
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