Parents sue; say N.C. frat hazing game led to son’s death

HICKORY, N.C. — A 19-year-old university student who died last year was repeatedly tackled by members of a fraternity who were hazing him at an off-campus farm, his parents said in a lawsuit filed Friday.

Harrison Kowiak of Tampa, Fla., died after a head injury caused a severe brain hemorrhage, the lawsuit said. The complaint seeks damages and blames Theta Chi Fraternity, the fraternity’s members and Lenoir-Rhyne University.

“We believe Harrison’s death was part of a long history of hazing at this fraternity,” said Raleigh-based attorney David Kirby in a statement. “There is absolutely no reason for this dangerous activity to still be occurring in this day and age, and it needs to be stopped immediately.”

The parents say in the lawsuit that Kowiak and another pledge were told to walk across a field one night in November 2008 while wearing light clothing. They said members of the fraternity wearing dark clothing repeatedly tackled the pledges during the initiation, leading to the injury.

Indianapolis-based Theta Chi Fraternity did not immediately return a call seeking comment. A spokesman for the university also did not return a call seeking comment.Full story.

Related links:
Parents of Lenoir-Rhyne student sue over “hazing”
Lawsuit: Fraternity hazing killed former Wharton golf standout
Parents blame college hazing for Tampa teen’s death
Lawsuit alleges teen died from hazing injuries


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