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State College Police Ask For Help Identifying ‘Persons Of Interest’ At Former Fraternity House

Update, 3:30 p.m.: State College police have identified the individuals in question, according to a tweet published Thursday afternoon.

Anyone with additional investigation regarding events that occurred at the former fraternity house 329 E. Prospect Avenue are encouraged to call the police department ata (814) 234-7150.

Original Story: State College police are requesting public assistance in identifying a handful of individuals involved with alleged misconduct at a former fraternity house last month.

The seven individuals, whose photos are contained in this online document, were observed taking an unconscious, intoxicated woman from inside 329 E. Prospect Avenue and leaving her on the sidewalk of a nearby property over Halloween weekend.

According to a Penn State briefing on the same incident, 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.

Anyone with information regarding the incident or those involved is urged to contact the State College Police Department by calling (814) 234-7150, sending an email, or leaving an anonymous tip.

329 E. Prospect Ave. is 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. The house has continued to serve as a rental residence since the fraternity lost recognition as a student organization and had its charter revoked.

Residents of the house have continued representing themselves as a fraternity, according to Penn State and the borough.

Back in November, Penn State warned students to avoid the house following “troubling” behavior, including residents being accused of or found responsible for hazing and sexual misconduct. Police said they’ve already visited the property “at least ten times” this fall for violations of the borough’s coronavirus mitigation ordinance.

“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 in November. “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.”

A few years back, the house was one of two at the center of litigation between the borough and property owners over whether fraternities that lost university recognition could continue operating as a fraternity house.

In December 2019, a state appeals court ruled the borough couldn’t stop members from living there as a fraternity house because it was already operating as a fraternity house before State College amended its zoning ordinance to require fraternities be recognized by Penn State.

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About the Author

Matt DiSanto

Matt is a junior 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. He loves Seinfeld, is really into video games, and would wipe the floor with you in Halo. Follow him on Twitter @mattdisanto_ for bad sports takes or email him at [email protected]

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