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Parents Say Penn State Assistant AD Tim Bream Was At Beta Theta Pi When Timothy Piazza Fell

More than two months after Timothy Piazza died from injuries he sustained falling down the basement steps at Beta Theta Pi fraternity, his parents said in an interview with The Philadelphia Inquirer that Penn State Assistant Athletic Director Tim Bream was present at the fraternity house that night.

The Centre Daily Times previously reported Bream was an advisor to Beta Theta Pi and lived in the fraternity house, according to the parent of another fraternity member. Despite these reports, details remained unclear on whether Bream was at the fraternity house on the night Piazza fell — February 2 — or the next morning, when paramedics were called nearly 12 hours after the initial fall.

Timothy Piazza’s father Jim told The Philadelphia Inquirer police said Bream was in the fraternity house that night, though there was no sign he was at the “party” fraternity brothers were holding for new members to accept their bids to join the chapter. Piazza was one of fourteen students supposed to accept his own bid that night.

“This individual’s job was to be an advisor and watch over these students,” Jim Piazza told The Philadelphia Inquirer. “[Bream] had to know there was alcohol going on. He had to know there was hazing going on.”

Beta Theta Pi was supposed to be a dry fraternity house, but State College Police say alcohol was likely involved in the incident that led to Piazza’s death.

University authorities said any advising or living arrangement would be between Bream and the Beta Theta Pi alumni board, as he would not be fulfilling this role in his capacity as a Penn State employee, but rather as an alumnus of the fraternity.

The Centre County District Attorney’s Office announced results of the criminal investigation into what happened at Beta Theta Pi that night should be released by mid-April, but Piazza’s father said police have revealed only limited details to the family.

“We know there was heavy drinking. We know it was part of a hazing process. We know his blood alcohol content was very high. We don’t know how high. We know he fell down stairs. We know they put him on a couch. And we know no one called for help,” Jim Piazza told The Philadelphia Inquirer.

Based on findings of the student conduct investigation, Vice President for Student Affairs Damon Sims said last week he expects the results of the criminal investigation to devastate the Penn State community.

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About the Author

Elissa Hill

Elissa was the managing editor of Onward State from 2017-2019. She is from Punxsutawney, PA [insert corny Bill Murray joke here] and considers herself an expert on all things ice cream. Follow her on Twitter (@ElissaKHill) for more corny jokes.

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