Appeals Court Reinstates Family Lawsuit in NIU Student Death - Higher Education


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Appeals Court Reinstates Family Lawsuit in NIU Student Death

by Associated Press

SYCAMORE, Ill. ― An Illinois appeals court has reinstated a wrongful death lawsuit against a Northern Illinois University fraternity by the family of a pledge who died in 2012.

The Daily Herald reports the family of David Bogenberger sued the NIU chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha, arguing the fraternity and its members were responsible for Bogenberger’s death because pledges were required to participate in excessive drinking to gain membership. The 19-year-old died in 2012 with a blood alcohol level of .43 percent after a fraternity party.

Bogenberger’s family sued the fraternity and fraternity members but a Cook County trial court dismissed the lawsuit in December 2014. The family filed an appeal the next month.

Five former fraternity members were sentenced to community service and fines in a hazing case involving Bogenberger’s death.

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