Mar 19, 2014 05:55 AM EDT
Hartford student Charged and Arrested in Hazing Incident
George T. Sinclair, a 21-year-old University of Hartford student, has been arrested following a hazing-related assault in West Hartford. He is scheduled to be arraigned in Hartford Superior Court, Wednesday.
According to the arrest warrant, Sinclair served as 'Assistant Pledge Master' for the Phi Delta Theta, an underground fraternity. He is facing a third-degree assault charge for his alleged participation in hazing a younger student during an off-campus fraternity party, The Courant reports.
In November, a freshman, who identified himself as a Muslim, approached the police for being ragged at the fraternity party. In the complaint, the student claimed that he and the other pledges were forced to strip down to their underwears and tread to the middle of a cold pond, while clapping their hands, for 20 minutes.
Plus, he and his fellow recruits were subjected to harsh punishments like hold a plank position with elbows placed on sharp edges of bottle caps or place lit cigarettes on their tongues and swallow them, if they couldn't answer frat questions correctly.
According to the warrant, at one instance a drunken Sinclair poked students' chest with the butt end of a golf club while they answered a fraternity-related questions.
When the student answered a question incorrectly, Sinclair struck him in the chest with the shaft of the club. He fell to the ground and was 'surrounded by fraternity brothers who spit on him, poured liquor on him, cursed at him, and stated something like, "look he's praying to Mecca,'" according to the warrant.
Sinclair admitted to using a golf club to shove and poke students. But he said that he did not intend to harm anyone.
During the investigation several other fraternity members admitted that freshmen were asked to participate in certain initiation activities like cleaning or running errands, but denied hazing or abuse incidents.
According to the warrant, although some details of the student's complaints were not authenticated, police found enough evidence to conclude that the claimant was 'subjected to some form of hazing by George Sinclair ... including an assault.'
The university spokesman said that Sinclair, a commuter student, will face school sanctions once the judicial process proceeds.
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