The hazing trial of three former Chico State fraternity members came to an abrupt end Tuesday, with a Butte County jury declaring the defendants not guilty on all charges.
“It was a lot of relief, especially on the part of my client’s parents,” said Kevin Sears, the attorney for Christopher Bizot.
Bizot, along with former Beta Theta Pi members Michael Murphy and Mathew Krupp, were accused of forcing pledges to stand in ice baths and do calisthenics as part of a hazing ritual conducted in April of 2007.
The case was the first to be tried under Matt’s Law, an anti hazing statute created after the death of former Chico State pledge Mathew Carrington.
During Tuesday’s trial two former Beta pledges testified they were submerged in water but never felt they were in danger.
“The penal code definition is very specific that there must be a likely threat of injury. And I think it wasn’t there in the facts,” said Sears.
The jury deliberated for less than three hours before reaching its decision. One juror told Sears that given the lack of evidence the whole trial was a waste of taxpayer money. Full story.
Filed under: Hazing, Lawsuits/Criminal Charges | Tagged: Beta Theta Pi, Chico State, Christopher Bizot, Hazing, Kevin Sears, Lawsuits/Criminal Charges, Mathew Carrington, Mathew Krupp, Matt's Law, Michael Murphy |