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Most serious charges dismissed in Penn State frat death

August 24, 2018

FILE - This Nov. 9, 2017, file photo shows the shuttered Beta Theta Pi fraternity house on Penn State University's main campus in State College, Pa. Former members of the fraternity are due in court for a preliminary hearing on charges related to the February 2017 death of a pledge after a night of hazing and drinking. The hearing Tuesday, Aug. 21, 2018, before a district judge will determine if there’s enough evidence to send charges against several of the defendants in the case to county court for trial. The charges relate to the death of 19-year-old Tim Piazza, of Lebanon, New Jersey. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar, File)

BELLEFONTE, Pa. (AP) — A judge is dismissing the most serious charges filed in a pledge’s fatal injuries suffered inside a Penn State fraternity house.

District Judge Carmine Prestia on Friday dismissed charges including involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment, saying the evidence is insufficient. But Prestia says six of the seven remaining defendants can be tried on less serious misdemeanor hazing charges.

Tampering, hindering apprehension and obstruction charges were dismissed against the seventh defendant. Two others previously pleaded guilty.

The seven Beta Theta Pi fraternity members were going through another hearing because a county judge reinstated charges previously dismissed by a district judge.

The charges stem from the 2017 death of 19-year-old Tim Piazza of New Jersey.

Piazza died of severe head and abdominal injuries. Authorities say he consumed a dangerous amount of alcohol.

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