Skip to Content, Navigation, or Footer.
We inform. You decide.
Sunday, August 14, 2022

Hazing involved paddling, chest slaps, police say

<p>Alpha Phi Alpha’s fraternity house, located at 630 NW 36th St., is where nine UF students and one alumnus allegedly engaged in hazing.</p>

Alpha Phi Alpha’s fraternity house, located at 630 NW 36th St., is where nine UF students and one alumnus allegedly engaged in hazing.

For four nights in a row, Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity members smacked five recruits with paddles. Each time, the beatings lasted at least an hour.

University Police filed sworn complaints to the State Attorney’s Office on Thursday alleging that nine UF students and one alumnus engaged in hazing with a risk of physical injury or death.

The report, which was released Friday, names the following APA members: Metkel W. Beiene, Chad W. Billington II, Brandon T. Daniel, Gregory J. Davis, Jason A. Dubery, Christopher D. Jenkins, Dominique E. Martin, Bryan E. Mizzell and Gary B. Terrell. Safo O. Agyemang, who graduated in 2007, also beat recruits, according to police.

None of the suspects is allowed to step foot on campus right now, according to a UF release. The university also fired Agyemang and Billington, who were temporary employees, said spokeswoman Janine Sikes.

“We are extremely disappointed with the alleged conduct of the 10 individuals charged with hazing,” said Dave Kratzer, UF’s interim vice president of student affairs. “We will not tolerate hazing or any behavior that threatens the health and safety of our students.”

While Sikes would not comment on any of the students in this case, she said UF usually suspends those who are suspects in “violent, serious incidents.”

The hazing included forced chores, slaps to the chest and paddle beatings, according to police. Scabs covered one recruit’s bottom. Green bruises spotted another man’s collarbone. A third recruit said he couldn’t sleep on his back for several nights.

APA members began hazing recruits after holding a meeting for interested members on Jan. 22. In the days after, the five recruits were ordered to recite information in unison at the fraternity house, located at 630 NW 36th St.

When the recruits made a mistake, members greeted them with “thunderslaps” — three or four smacks on the chest. UPD received a photo of one victim after receiving the abuse. Bright red marks in the shape of overlapping hands covered both sides of the recruits’ chest.

About a week after the initial meeting, members told recruits to spell a nine-letter acronym. With each letter, the members spanked the recruits with a paddle. The recruits were told this was a “birth right,” according to police.

For the next three nights, the recruits came to the APA house and answered questions about the fraternity. If the recruits didn’t answer correctly and at the same time, members hit them with paddles. At the end of each night, members spanked recruits six to nine times.

In all, the paddling sessions lasted between one and two hours each night, according to police.

Enjoy what you're reading? Get content from The Alligator delivered to your inbox

When an Alligator reporter knocked on the front door of the APA house Friday, nobody answered.

UPD began its investigation when it received a complaint on Feb. 4, and on Feb. 7 the APA national organization ordered the UF chapter to stop all activities until further notice.

Sikes said the university’s Anti-Hazing Task Force will meet Monday at 2 p.m.

“Disciplinary procedures will come as appropriate,” she said.

Alpha Phi Alpha is a National Pan-Hellenic Council fraternity.

NPHC is comprised of nine historically African-American fraternities and sororities.

According to the fraternity’s website, APA was the first intercollegiate Greek-letter fraternity for African-Americans, and it was founded at Cornell University in Ithaca, N.Y., in 1906.

Alpha Phi Alpha’s fraternity house, located at 630 NW 36th St., is where nine UF students and one alumnus allegedly engaged in hazing.

Support your local paper
Donate Today
The Independent Florida Alligator has been independent of the university since 1971, your donation today could help #SaveStudentNewsrooms. Please consider giving today.

Powered by SNworks Solutions by The State News
All Content © 2022 The Independent Florida Alligator and Campus Communications, Inc.