Thirteen students receive proposed university sanctions following investigation of student alcohol poisoning

May 5, 2022
Contact: Christian Basi, 573-882-4430, BasiC@missouri.edu

COLUMBIA, Mo. – Today, the University of Missouri Office of Student Accountability and Support (OSAS) under the Division of Student Affairs took an important step in their investigation of an incident resulting in the alcohol poisoning of an incoming fraternity member during the early hours of Oct. 20, 2021, at the now closed Mizzou chapter of Phi Gamma Delta (also known as Fiji) house. As a result, 13 students have received proposed disciplinary sanctions.

The incident resulted in the hospitalization of the student, who remains under medical care. The MU Police Department has forwarded information about the incident to the Boone County Prosecutor’s Office, and a criminal investigation continues.

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act prevents the university from providing details about the disciplinary decisions. However, university sanctions can be severe, including suspension or expulsion.

The investigation by MUPD revealed that significant amounts of alcohol were consumed during a social event involving current and potential recruits of the fraternity.

“Safety of the Mizzou community is our highest priority, and we must address alcohol use and other concerns in holistic ways to provide education and services that work together to support safer behavior and an overall culture,” said Mun Choi, University of Missouri president. “In our conversation with student leaders, they are 100% with us in making our campus even safer for everyone, but there is continued work to do.”

The university waited to conduct its own examination so as not to compromise the criminal investigation. All of those sanctioned by the University will be provided due process per the conduct process, including the option to contest the proposed sanctions at a hearing and the opportunity for appeal.

The university also is conducting a review of campus behavior, especially as it relates to unsafe behaviors, including, but not limited to, alcohol consumption, drug use, hazing and sexual misconduct. Additionally, MU has partnered with multiple national efforts dedicated to mitigating risky behaviors.

“My thoughts remain with the students and families impacted,” said Bill Stackman, vice chancellor for Student Affairs. “The Healthy Communities Initiative, which is our review of campus behavior, our national partnerships, and the conversations I am having with students and our alumni are all aimed at preventing situations like this from happening again.”

The Mizzou chapter of Phi Gamma Delta was found responsible for multiple violations of MU’s Standard of Conduct (Collected Rules and Regulations 200.010) during the events on Oct. 20. Through the conduct procedures, the university withdrew recognition of the chapter as a student organization, and the Fiji house was closed.

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