BGSU statement regarding Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity conduct case
April 2, 2021
BOWLING GREEN, Ohio – On behalf of Bowling Green State University, Alex Solis, deputy chief of staff and University spokesperson, issued the following statement regarding an update in the conduct case involving Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity:
Today, Bowling Green State University met with local and national leaders of Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity. The University worked with special counsel David DeVillers, a former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio at the firm of Barnes & Thornburg, to pursue a thorough and fair investigation to seek the truth and facts regarding the alleged hazing activity on March 4.
BGSU has charged the organization with six violations of the Code of Student Conduct:
- 6.B.1.a. - Offenses Against Persons- Harm to Others
- 6.B.2.a. - Offenses Against Persons – Hazing
- 6.B.2.d. - Offenses Against Persons - Hazing
- 6.B.2.f. - Offenses Against Persons – Hazing
- 6.B.2.h. - Offenses Against Persons – Hazing
- 6.D.2.d. - Offenses Disrupting Order or Disregarding Health and Safety - Organization Alcohol
Hazing is absolutely intolerable. BGSU continues to work with local law enforcement, who are actively leading their own investigation into this serious situation. While these University charges don’t bring back student Stone Foltz, our goal is to hold those accountable who are responsible for this tragedy.
Today’s charges are another step in the ongoing investigation concerning the fraternity with adjudication scheduled for completion by April 13. The conduct processes involving individual students also remains ongoing.
***ON BACKGROUND – ACTIONS TAKEN BY BOWLING GREEN STATE UNIVERSITY***
On March 5, Bowling Green State University became aware of alleged hazing activity involving alcohol consumption at a Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity off-campus event on March 4. BGSU immediately placed this fraternity on interim suspension as the University works with local law enforcement, who are actively taking the lead in investigating this serious situation.
This tragic incident led to the passing of student Stone Foltz on Sunday, March 7 after healthcare providers coordinated the donation of Stone’s organs.
That weekend, BGSU began working with student leaders to address the short- and long-term future of fraternity and sorority life. BGSU has suspended all new member intake processes and on- and off-campus social events of chapters in all four Greek councils, including the Interfraternity Council, Multicultural Greek Council, National Pan-Hellenic Council and College Panhellenic Conference.
BGSU launched a full inquiry into each Greek chapter’s prevention and compliance responsibilities under University policies prohibiting hazing. These University processes and policies have been established to set high expectations and standards and to enforce compliance and ensure the safety of all students.
Recognizing the seriousness of this situation, BGSU has engaged an expert, independent third party to assist with the conduct investigation. Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost has approved the appointment of special counsel David DeVillers, a former U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Ohio at the firm of Barnes & Thornburg. BGSU is completing a thorough and fair investigation, seeking the truth and facts, to hold the responsible students and groups accountable for their actions. Our own student code of conduct investigation is still an ongoing investigation with adjudication scheduled for completion by April 13. The conduct processes involving individual students also remains ongoing.
Given that Pi Kappa Alpha is not currently recognized as a registered student organization, the fraternity’s Greek letters were removed from its on-campus residence on March 7.
BGSU also instituted additional measures to provide for a safe restart and recommit plan for its Greek chapters to resume operations, including a zero-tolerance hazing approach.
President Rodney Rogers joined the Inter-University Council of Ohio, which includes presidents of all the state’s public universities, in sending a letter of support for Collin’s Law to Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine, Ohio Department of Higher Education Chancellor Randy Gardner, Ohio Senate President Matt Huffman, Ohio House of Representatives Speaker Robert Cupp, and all elected members of the 134th General Assembly. This legislation helps ensure Ohio is hazing-free and elevates consequences for those unacceptable actions.
BGSU also recognizes that hazing may not be limited to this single incident or group. In an effort to increase accountability and transparency, the University has finalized a partnership with Dyad Strategies to conduct a broader review of fraternity and sorority life and other student organizations and activities.
BGSU's goal is to get a clearer understanding of student life culture, and this external group will provide their report, which will be shared with the community. The University is committed to keeping our community updated regarding this collective process.
President Rogers hosted roundtable discussions with students to focus on BGSU's anti-hazing efforts and is launching a presidential working group to build a framework for the University’s anti-hazing efforts and to implement recommendations from Dyad Strategies.
Above all, BGSU believes hazing is absolutely intolerable and is committed to taking action to ensure the health and safety of its community. This is an ongoing process, and the University and public will continue to be updated.
Updated: 04/02/2021 09:08AM