Parents Say Penn State Student Was Brutally Hazed For Months Before He Committed Suicide

Marquise Braham penn state altoona hazing death suicide


The parents of Marquise Braham are suing Penn State and the Phi Sigma Kappa fraternity, claiming months of intense hazing led to the suicide death of their son in March 2014. The Penn State-Altoona student jumped to his death off the roof of a New York area parking garage or hotel (reports vary).

According to the lawsuit, the freshman was forced to “consume gross amounts of alcohol” and mouthwash, swallow live fish, and kill, gut, and skin animals. It also claims the 18-year-old was forced to fight fellow pledges, burned with candle wax, deprived of sleep for 89 hours, and had a gun held to his head as part of the hazing activities. The lawsuit also said the hazing rituals included choosing between snorting cocaine or being sodomized on video.

Braham allegedly killed himself before he was to return to the fraternity and take part in hazing a new class of pledges.

“In my family’s opinion, both Penn State and Phi Sigma Kappa severely damaged our son, both physically and mentally, with hazing activities, and even worse, sought to allegedly cover it up by destroying evidence,” Rich Braham, Marquise’s father, a managing editor at ABC News, said.

Penn State University spokeswoman Lisa Powers said the college, which suspended the fraternity after Marquise’s death, did not comment on pending litigation.

Ugh, this sickens me. Even if Marquise died because of other issues, it’s clear that this hazing was brutal and unnecessary. There are other ways to bond.

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