FAMU band members charged with hazing over manslaughter


There was no single blow, stomp or strike to Robert Champion’s bruised and battered body that killed him as he was pummeled by fellow Florida A&M University marching band members during a hazing ritual aboard a charter bus last fall, the Associated Press reports. Instead, his death was caused by multiple blows from many individuals. That inability to pinpoint which blow ultimately caused the 26-year-old drum major’s death led authorities to charge 13 defendants Wednesday with hazing rather than more serious counts like manslaughter or second-degree murder.

“His death is not linked to one sole strike but it is attributed to multiple blows,” said State Attorney Lawson Lamar at a news conference announcing the charges.

Champion’s mother, Pam, said she was glad charges were brought but disappointed they weren’t more severe.

“I thought it should send a harsher message,” she said.

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