Senate panel approves anti-hazing bill

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A Senate committee has approved legislation to rewrite Pennsylvania’s hazing laws.

Senate Bill 1090 was reported out of the Senate Judiciary Committee on Tuesday by a vote of 13-0.

The measure authored by Majority Leader Jake Corman would increase penalties when hazing results in injury or death.

Hazing that results in injury would be a third-degree misdemeanor and offenders would face up to a year in prison. Hazing that results in death would be a third-degree felony, punishable by up to seven years in prison.

The legislation also would require schools to have policies and reporting procedures in place to stop hazing. Courts could seize the property of fraternities and sororities involved in hazing violations.

The bill is named for Tim Piazza, a 19-year-old Penn State student who became severely intoxicated and died from a fall down basement stairs during a pledge ceremony last year at the now-closed Beta Theta Pi house.

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