Lawyers: Illinois Hazing Law Vague, Unconstitutional

Defense attorneys want a judge to drop the charges against their clients

Monday, Apr 7, 2014  |  Updated 9:51 AM CDT
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Police say 19-year-old David Bogenberger of Palatine died after being going to a fraternity party where he and other pledges were ordered to go from room to room chugging alcohol. Sharon Wright reports.

Police say 19-year-old David Bogenberger of Palatine died after being going to a fraternity party where he and other pledges were ordered to go from room to room chugging alcohol. Sharon Wright reports.

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22 Warrants Issued After NIU Fraternity Death

Freshman David Bogenberger was found dead the morning of Nov. 2 at the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity house near the DeKalb campus. Christian Farr reports.
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Lawyers representing five former fraternity members who are charged following the 2012 death of a pledge say Illinois' hazing law is unconstitutional.

Defense attorneys are arguing the state's hazing statute is too vague and want a judge to drop the charges against their clients. Prosecutors disagree.

The five men are accused of felony hazing for the November 2012 death of Northern Illinois University freshman David Bogenberger.

The 19-year-old was found dead at the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity house near the DeKalb campus. Toxicology tests showed his blood-alcohol concentration was about five times the legal limit for driving.

At a court appearance last January attorney Josh Diedn expressed condolences to the Bogenberger family but said he didn't believe the state would "be able to show that this tragic occurrence was the result of criminal conduct."

The NIU brothers charged in the case are accused of hosting the party in which pledges were ordered to go from room to room chugging alcohol.

The state's hazing law makes it illegal to require students to perform any unauthorized act that causes bodily harm to be accepted to a group connected with a school.

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