Hofstra fraternity suspended over hazing allegations

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A fraternity at Hofstra University has been suspended over allegations of hazing.

The Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity was placed on interim suspension last month, according to the university.

A Hofstra University sophomore spoke to News 12 about what he calls a traumatizing hazing experience. He says he was locked in the shower for an hour during his first night of pledging at the Fraternity Sigma Alpha Mu, also known as SAMMY.

“It was essentially like a sauna. Imagine a sauna wearing a wetsuit. That's what it felt like,” he says.

The worst incident, he says, took place on the final night of pledging on Sept. 21 at the fraternity's off-campus house on Greengrove Avenue.

“The alumni went crazy. One of them took a lighter to my hair and said, 'Oh it's long hair, like a girl’s. He wants to be a girl.' They put it up and seared 2 inches,” he says.

He also says he had cigarette butts thrown at him and was spit on. He says he couldn’t tell them to stop since he was outnumbered by the 16 who participated or watched. 

Once the hazing was over on that final night, he says he left quietly and then raced to a friend’s house nearby.

Edward Mabeza says he took his friend to campus security immediately to report what happened. "To see him shut down and in complete shock made me terrified and angry," he says.

Taylor Clarke, the editor-in-chief for the Hofstra Chronicle, says she broke the story on Tuesday.

“I've been working on this for about a month. Something like this is more important to get out ethically and correctly than it is to get it out quickly,” she says.

Clarke adds, "My sources came to me and told me that they wanted to put the story out there to let the community know what was going on and to prevent this from happening to other people."

The sophomore pledge says, "I just hope one day they figure out what they did was wrong."

The executive director of the fraternity says the university denied his request to collaborate on the investigation. He also says hazing will not be tolerated.

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