Suspended Radford University fraternity reinstated after investigation

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The last of four fraternities suspended for alleged animal abuse in December was reinstated Jan. 10, said Radford University spokesperson Sherry Wallace.

The Alpha Sigma Phi chapter’s suspension was lifted based on preliminary results of the University’s investigation into claims that a goat was being abused by a fraternity on campus. Radford University chapters of Delta Chi, Pi Lambda Phi and Sigma Phi were also placed on interim suspension Dec. 5 pending investigation, but reinstated Dec. 21.

The four fraternities were suspended after rumors began circulating in the local community and online that Greek life members were abusing a young goat. A http://www.change.org petition signed by 557 people accused a Radford University fraternity of raising a goat “in order for them to then kill it as initiation into the fraternity.”

Gordon Heminger, President and CEO of Alpha Sigma Phi, criticized the University’s handling of the situation in a statement.

“It was very disturbing that the University violated their own published policies to illegally suspend the chapter and deprive their students of basic due process rights,” Heminger said.  “It is outrageous it took this long for Radford University to complete what should have been a very simple investigation, especially when there was never any evidence that any member of Alpha Sigma Phi, let alone Alpha Sigma Phi, harmed the goat.”

The University did not respond to a question asking why it took an additional three weeks to reinstate Alpha Sigma Phi after lifting suspensions on the other fraternities.

Alpha Sigma Phi Chapter President Andrew Friedman also voiced dissatisfaction with how the University responded to the allegations.

“This whole situation was incredibly stressful,” Friedman said. “We are thankful for our parents, alumni and Headquarters staff for their support as we felt that no staff member at the University cared about us as students and that was very disappointing.”

Wallace did not say whether or not a goat has been located as a result of the investigation, but said that the investigation is ongoing and expected to conclude in the near future.

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