UNC chapter of Chi Phi fraternity gets 1-year probation

tgrubb@newsobserver.comMarch 25, 2014 

— A UNC-Chapel Hill fraternity has been put on probation for a year after an investigation into alcohol-related incidents involving new members last fall.

Chi Phi Fraternity also must hire a resident adviser, according to Michael Azarian, executive director of the national Chi Phi Fraternity organization.

“After a thorough investigation and review of the facts, the Chi Phi Grand Council has agreed to a course of corrective action that will ensure the Alpha-Alpha Chapter at UNC-Chapel Hill is in compliance with national standards and values,” Azarian said in a statement.

The national fraternity initially suspended the UNC-CH chapter in November, pending its investigation. The chapter’s meetings, social events and other activities were canceled, although current members were allowed to live in the 7,000-square-foot house on South Columbia Street.

The Chapel Hill chapter has about 55 members, according to the university’s Interfraternity Council.

A Nov. 25 announcement from the national group said the suspension stemmed from “alleged risk management violations including alcohol violations and inappropriate New Member activities.”

Winston Crisp, vice chancellor for student affairs, said in a statement Tuesday that the university has “zero tolerance” for actions that risk student health and safety.

“We will continue to evaluate the conduct of chapter members and the chapter’s adherence to university policies,” Crisp said. “We value the many diverse and positive contributions that students in fraternities and sororities make as part of their educational and social experience at Carolina. At the same time, we expect all members of the Greek community to meet high standards of behavior that reflect the university’s values.”

Student death unrelated

University and Carrboro Police Department officials have said the national Chi Phi investigation is not related to the October 2012 death of Charlotte native and Chi Phi pledge David Shannon, who fell to his death at a Carrboro cement plant.

Carrboro Police spokesman Capt. Chris Atack has said alcohol almost certainly played a role in Shannon’s death. Police do not know whether hazing or any fraternity activity was involved.

UNC will consider the national report as part of its own investigation into the fraternity’s actions, said Fields Pierce, chairman of UNC-CH’s Greek Judicial Board. There is no deadline for a decision, he said.

The university also is investigating a second fraternity, Pi Lambda Phi, for undisclosed allegations, said Aaron Bachenheimer, director of the Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life and Community Involvement.

The university doesn’t comment on the status of its investigations but could levy a number of sanctions, including fines, probation, recruitment restrictions, community service and suspensions.

UNC’s Chi Phi fraternity also was cited in 2010 for violating the Interfraternity Council’s recruitment policy by serving alcohol to potential new members during a “dry” recruitment period and to minors during an unofficial summer event.

Chi Phi was placed on eight weeks of deferred social probation after that investigation, documents show.

Grubb: 919-932-8746

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