Former FMU student awarded $1.6 million in frat hazing case - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Former FMU student awarded $1.6 million in fraternity hazing case

Maurice Robinson, the Defendant. Source: Florence County Sheriff's Office Maurice Robinson, the Defendant. Source: Florence County Sheriff's Office

FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) – A former Francis Marion University student and his legal counsel won a $1.6 million lawsuit Thursday stemming from a fraternity hazing incident in October 2011 in Florence.

According to a news release from McLeod Law Group, a Florence County jury returned a verdict in favor of Daniel McElveen, the Plaintiff, who alleged that he was repeatedly beaten during the Phi Beta Sigma Francis Marion Chapter's "Hell Night" initiation process on the night of October 22, 2011.

The incident happened at the home of the Defendant, an FMU alum and high-ranking fraternity member named Maurice Robinson. According to Captain Michael Nunn with the Florence County Sheriff's Office, nine suspects, including Robinson, intentionally inflicted physical harm on the victim by beating him with a paddle in order to be admitted to the fraternity. The victim reportedly suffered serious injuries and had to be hospitalized for several days. The victim also suffered acute renal failure, according to the McLeod Law Group.

As a result of the incident, nine suspects were arrested and charged with misdemeanor hazing, three suspects who were FMU students at the time were suspended, and the FMU chapter of Phi Beta Sigma was also suspended.

READ MORE: Nine charged after hazing incident sends victim to hospital

"We have a policy that prohibits hazing of any kind and we hold strong to that," said Angela Crosland of FMU shortly after the incident. "This was an off-campus incident, we have no control over what happens off campus but I think we've done a pretty good job controlling what happens on campus."

Crosland said FMU has an ongoing risk management program overseeing the activities of Greek Organizations at the university. She added the university hasn't had a problem like this and they will continue to do what they've always done with the program.

"This is just an isolated incident and we hope nothing like this ever happens again," Crosland said.

At the trial, Robinson argued that McElveen was responsible for allowing himself to be hazed and beaten, the McLeod news release states. McElveen, through his counsel, presented evidence that hazing is not a consensual act, but the perpetrators hold power and control over the victims. The jury returned a verdict for $600,000 actual damages and $1,000,000 in punitive damages against the Defendant.

"The jury rejected the idea that victims are to blame in hazing cases," stated lead attorney Mullins McLeod. "I hope their verdict makes college students think twice before they brutally, physically haze innocent students. Hazing and bullying has no place in our schools or universities."

Copyright 2014 WMBF News. All rights reserved.

  • Local NewsLocalMore>>

  • Breaking

    West Florence High School principal on paid leave

    West Florence High School principal on paid leave

    Friday, February 23 2018 8:52 AM EST2018-02-23 13:52:52 GMT
    Pam Quick. (Source: FSD1)Pam Quick. (Source: FSD1)

    The principal of West Florence High School has been on administrative leave with pay since Feb. 14, according to a district official. Principal Pam Quick is one of two West Florence High employees to be placed on administrative leave this month, confirmed Florence School District One Director Pam Little-McDaniel.

    More >>

    The principal of West Florence High School has been on administrative leave with pay since Feb. 14, according to a district official. Principal Pam Quick is one of two West Florence High employees to be placed on administrative leave this month, confirmed Florence School District One Director Pam Little-McDaniel.

    More >>
  • Tracy Lawrence to perform at 2018 CCMF

    Tracy Lawrence to perform at 2018 CCMF

    Friday, February 23 2018 8:03 AM EST2018-02-23 13:03:00 GMT
    Source: CCMF TwitterSource: CCMF Twitter
    Source: CCMF TwitterSource: CCMF Twitter

    Tracy Lawrence is the latest artist announced to perform at the 2018 Carolina Country Music Fest in Myrtle Beach. Toby Keith, Luke Bryan, the Zac Brown Band, Old Dominion, Chris Lane, Brett Eldredge, Dylan Scott, Kane Brown, Michael Ray, Devin Dawson, Jon Langston and Russell Dickerson are also scheduled to perform.

    More >>

    Tracy Lawrence is the latest artist announced to perform at the 2018 Carolina Country Music Fest in Myrtle Beach. Toby Keith, Luke Bryan, the Zac Brown Band, Old Dominion, Chris Lane, Brett Eldredge, Dylan Scott, Kane Brown, Michael Ray, Devin Dawson, Jon Langston and Russell Dickerson are also scheduled to perform.

    More >>
  • One killed after car, tractor-trailer collide in Darlington Co.

    One killed after car, tractor-trailer collide in Darlington Co.

    Friday, February 23 2018 7:17 AM EST2018-02-23 12:17:06 GMT
    (Source: Raycom Media)(Source: Raycom Media)

    One person was killed in a two-vehicle crash early-Friday morning, according to information from SCHP. The crash occurred just after midnight on U.S. Highway 52, just north of Dovesville.

    More >>

    One person was killed in a two-vehicle crash early-Friday morning, according to information from SCHP. The crash occurred just after midnight on U.S. Highway 52, just north of Dovesville.

    More >>
  • Trending StoriesTrending StoriesMore>>

  • Police: father killed 5-year-old son, buried him in backyard

    Police: father killed 5-year-old son, buried him in backyard

    Friday, February 23 2018 5:09 AM EST2018-02-23 10:09:31 GMT
    Friday, February 23 2018 5:09 AM EST2018-02-23 10:09:31 GMT
    Police said a father beat his 5-year-old son to death with a shovel Wednesday, and then buried him in a backyard. (Source: WGCL/CNN)Police said a father beat his 5-year-old son to death with a shovel Wednesday, and then buried him in a backyard. (Source: WGCL/CNN)

    Police said a father beat his 5-year-old son to death with a shovel Wednesday, and then buried him in a backyard.

    More >>

    Police said a father beat his 5-year-old son to death with a shovel Wednesday, and then buried him in a backyard.

    More >>
  • 'Heartbroken' Kenworthy visits South Korean dog meat farm

    'Heartbroken' Kenworthy visits South Korean dog meat farm

    Friday, February 23 2018 3:05 AM EST2018-02-23 08:05:09 GMT
    Friday, February 23 2018 9:08 AM EST2018-02-23 14:08:05 GMT
    (AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon). In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, left, and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas watch dogs in cages at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the S...(AP Photo/Ahn Young-joon). In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018, photo, American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy, left, and his boyfriend Matthew Wilkas watch dogs in cages at a dog meat farm in Siheung, South Korea. Kenworthy saved five stray dogs during the S...

    The Associated Press joined American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy on a tour of a Korean dog meat farm that's about to be shuttered by the Humane Society International.

    More >>

    The Associated Press joined American freestyle skier Gus Kenworthy on a tour of a Korean dog meat farm that's about to be shuttered by the Humane Society International.

    More >>
  • Florida man yells 'murderers!' as he's executed for slaying

    Florida man yells 'murderers!' as he's executed for slaying

    Thursday, February 22 2018 8:24 PM EST2018-02-23 01:24:33 GMT
    Thursday, February 22 2018 11:47 PM EST2018-02-23 04:47:48 GMT
    (Florida Department of Law Enforcement via AP). This undated photo made available by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement shows Eric Scott Branch in custody. Florida is scheduled to execute Branch Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018, for raping and killing a ...(Florida Department of Law Enforcement via AP). This undated photo made available by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement shows Eric Scott Branch in custody. Florida is scheduled to execute Branch Thursday, Feb. 22, 2018, for raping and killing a ...

    Florida inmate yells 'murderers!' repeatedly as he's executed for his convictioin in 1993 rape and killing of a college student.

    More >>

    Florida inmate yells 'murderers!' repeatedly as he's executed for his convictioin in 1993 rape and killing of a college student.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly