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Md. Police Probe Alleged Hazing

April 13, 1998

PRINCESS ANNE, Md. (AP) _ Five college students were beaten so severely with wooden paddles and canes during a two-month fraternity initiation they had to be hospitalized, state police said Monday.

Some of the pledges of Kappa Alpha Psi at the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore underwent surgery last week for cuts and infections on their buttocks from being spanked daily from Feb. 8 to April 4, according to police and family members.

Police said the beatings occurred at the two-story fraternity house in tiny Princess Anne, home to UMES, a historically black institution with 3,200 students.

``Anyone who would do this to someone else is a vicious animal,″ said Cynthia Pinkney, whose son, Andre Smith Clemensia, a 19-year-old from Clinton, was among those injured.

No arrests have been made.

The university on Monday suspended Kappa Alpha Psi, canceling all the fraternity’s activities at the small, historically black college until the investigation is complete.

The university refused to release the names of fraternity leaders, saying that if wrongdoing is proven, they could face suspension or expulsion.

The chapter president told officials that injuries to four of the five students occurred at a function in Baltimore early this month and were not related to the fraternity’s initiation, according to a release by UMES. No information was available from the university or the fraternity about the fifth alleged victim.

Police said one student was released from the hospital during the weekend. Hospital officials would not provide any information on the other students’ conditions nor say whether they were still hospitalized.

Richard Snow, executive director of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc., based in Philadelphia, said the fraternity takes hazing very seriously.

``We prosecute anyone, or assist in prosecuting anyone, who participates in an illegal act under name of Kappa Alpha Psi,″ he said.

Kappa Alpha Psi reached a $2.25 million settlement in December 1996 with the family of Michael Davis, who died after being beaten, body-slammed and kicked in the chest by fraternity members at Southeast Missouri State in February 1994.

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