Fraternity draws frowns, suspension from Valdosta State - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Fraternity draws frowns, suspension from Valdosta State

(Source: Leigh Touchton) (Source: Leigh Touchton)
(Source: Leigh Touchton) (Source: Leigh Touchton)
Dr. Russell Mast Dr. Russell Mast
VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) - The Sigma Nu fraternity chapter at Valdosta State remained on suspension Wednesday- as the university investigates an offensive incident at Saturday's football game.

Members of the fraternity are accused of holding up sexually derogatory signs and making sexually derogatory remarks toward female students. "They have summons letters. They make appointments to come in and then each one will be dealt with individually by our conduct officer and then the group will also be dealt with by both their national and the university," said  Russell Mast, VSU Dean of Students.

University officials are meeting with each of the five fraternity brothers involved, but not everyone on campus feels they should be punished. "No, I think punishing Sigma Nu would be a violation of their free speech," said Brandon Kirby, VSU Student.

An unidentified Sigma Nu member was mum on the subject Wednesday when WALB went to the fraternity's house to try and speak with the fraternity members. "Yeah, I'm not answering' any questions on that. If you guys want to call national, they'll answer any questions you have," the member explained.

WALB called the fraternity's national office and tried to speak with the executive director for a statement, but had to leave a message. The executive director eventually responded to WALB with an e-mail, saying the statement on the fraternity's national website is the only statement they are making at this time.

The statement reads, in part, "We are concerned by this information and we are working closely with officials of Valdosta State University in the investigation of this matter."

As for the students' potential punishment, "It depends on if the student wants to admit they've made a mistake, if they want to accept responsibility for their action," Mast said.

Mast added that he hoped to have the investigation completed, the conduct hearings done, and any possible punishment handed down by the end of next week.

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