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Penn State Discourages Visits To Former Fraternity House Following Misconduct Allegations, Violations

Penn State and State College officials are warning students of “troubling” behavior from individuals living in a former fraternity house, according to a mass email sent Friday night.

The message concerned a rental property that formerly served as a chapter house for Sigma Alpha Mu fraternity, which was suspended in 2017 for multiple alcohol, health, and safety violations. Located at 329 E. Prospect Avenue, the house has continued to serve as a rental residence ever since Sigma Alpha Mu lost recognition as a student organization and had its charter revoked.

Since April 2017, according to Penn State, residents at the property were accused of or found responsible for a number of offenses, including hazing and sexual misconduct. This semester, the university found residents repeatedly hosted large gatherings that violated the borough’s coronavirus mitigation ordinance.

According to the email, State College police have already visited the property “at least ten times” this semester for similar violations.

State College is reportedly considering taking additional legal action. Penn State said it’s already suspended two students living there.

Over Halloween weekend, an underaged female Penn State student who attended a gathering at the house was found both intoxicated and unconscious on a nearby sidewalk. According to Penn State’s briefing, residents are accused of placing her there in the early hours of Saturday, October 31.

The female student was transported to Mount Nittany Medical Center and treated for alcohol poisoning. She made a full recovery.

An unrelated allegation of sexual assault occurring at the property was also reported over that weekend.

“In short, residents at 329 East Prospect have demonstrated a pattern of behavior that is troubling and has not stopped despite the continuing efforts of local police and University authorities,” Vice President for Student Affairs Damon Sims said. “For that reason, we strongly discourage any student from affiliating with the unrecognized group living in this facility, and we urge you not to attend activities there.”

Anyone with additional information regarding the allegations or concerns with the property and its residents are encouraged to contact the State College Police Department at 814-234-7150 or Penn State’s Office of Student Conduct at 814-863-0342.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt is a senior majoring in journalism and Onward State's managing editor. He's a huge Philadelphia sports fan, fantasy football aficionado, and washed-up drummer hailing from Collegeville, Pa. The quickest way to his heart is Margherita pizza and "Arrested Development" quotes. Follow him on Twitter @mattdisanto_ if you hate yourself or email Matt at [email protected] if you hate him.

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