Fraternity Pledge Loses Testicle In Hazing Ritual
Ohio cops probe abuse in "Gobbler House" basement
NOVEMBER 7--Ohio cops are investigating a college fraternity hazing incident that left a 19-year-old pledge short one testicle, records show.
Three Wilmington College students seeking induction into Gamma Phi Gamma were subjected last week to a battering in the fraternity house, according to search warrant affidavits prepared by police.
As detailed by investigators, the blindfolded pledges were brought to the basement of the fraternity (which is known as “Gobbler House”), where about 20 frat members “were either watching or participating in the pledging.”
The basement of the house (seen at right) contained about three inches of water and the pledges were ordered to “lie on the floor and imitate a swimming action.” They were then directed to “strip completely nude except for the blindfold” and had “a substance described as being like ‘Icy Hot’ applied to their nipples, back, buttocks and scrotum.”
After having limburger cheese stuffed in their mouths, the pledges were each given a “ball of stuffing” and ordered to “simulate having sexual intercourse with it.” Specifically, the trio was told to “fuck the sheep.”
The pledges were then hit with “towels and shirts that had the ends balled up in knots” or which had “items tied inside them to inflict pain.” Pledge Tyler Lawrence, 19, was struck in the testicles with “a towel fashioned as a weapon,” according to an affidavit sworn by Wilmington Police Department Detective Brian Kratzer.
Lawrence “went to the ground immediately in pain and was clutching himself in the groin.” Frat members eventually got Lawrence to his feet so they could conclude the hazing by stuffing vinegar-soaked bananas into the mouths of the three men (who were told the item was “poop or shit”).
After the initiation, Lawrence complained of significant pain in his testicles. He was transported to a local hospital where he underwent surgery to have a testicle removed as a result of “damage caused to him when he was struck by the towel.” Detective Kratzer also noted that Lawrence had “large bruising and contusions upon much of his upper torso resulting from being struck during the initiation.”
During an October 31 search of “Gobbler House,” cops seized “towels with balled ends, ‘icy-hot’ liniment, and other props which may have been used” during the initiation ceremony. Police also obtained warrants to examine the two other pledges for evidence of “bruising and contusions.”
As police probe the hazing of the three pledges, Wilmington College officials have suspended Gamma Phi Gamma. Students at the Quaker-affiliated school could face suspension or expulsion for their involvement in the fraternity initiation. (3 pages)