The University of Texas chapter of Sigma Alpha Epsilon has been suspended by the fraternity’s national leadership for at least four years for “health-and-safety concerns” and the chapter’s “inability to adhere to the national organization’s standards and expectations.”
Sigma Alpha Epsilon’s national body posted the news to its website, saying that authorities had received information through the organization’s anonymous, toll-free hazing hotline, investigated and quickly intervened to suspend the Texas Rho chapter’s charter until all current members have graduated.
“Sigma Alpha Epsilon has zero tolerance for any actions or behaviors that are not consistent with our mission and our creed, ‘The True Gentleman,’ ” the organization said. “We are committed to the safety and well-being of our members and others with whom they interact. Furthermore, we will not hesitate to impose sanctions when guidelines are not being followed.”
Two members of the chapter, Joseph Hardgrove and John Bass, were charged with assault in 2015 after being accused by police of assaulting a man who’d complained about loud music, according to arrest affidavits filed against the men at the time.
Earlier that year, the SAE chapter at the University of Oklahoma was disbanded when a video showing members singing a racist chant went viral. Two members of that chapter were expelled from the school.
“Although we regret the closure of any chapter, there are situations in which it becomes necessary and warranted,” the organization said. “Our leadership remains optimistic that we can re-establish Texas Rho in the near future with members who exemplify our beliefs and who serve as leaders and role models on campus and in the greater Austin community.”