Pi Kappa Alpha sued for hazing

A pledge of the Gamma Alpha chapter of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, who alleges that he was seriously injured during hazing in September 2009, filed a lawsuit electronically on Aug. 12 of this year against the fraternity and 10 of its members.

The lawsuit contends that, as the result of wrongful conduct by the fraternity members being charged, the pledge, Thomas Scott Willoch, suffered severe and permanent bodily injuries, physical pain and severe mental distress when he was dropped out of a truck onto the pavement while unconscious.

Willoch says in his lawsuit that he required medical treatment and has been hospitalized repeatedly since the time of the alleged hazing, has and will continue to incur medical expenses and is incapacitated and unable to seek or obtain employment.

Willoch is suing the fraternity and the 10 members named for negligence in providing alcohol to a minor, allowing him to be hurt while unconscious, and failing to transport him to a hospital for treatment after he sustained his injuries.

He is seeking damages for physical and emotional harm, past and future medical bills, and wages lost due to his loss of earning capacity.

Willoch’s attorney, R. Randy Edwards, declined to comment on the pending lawsuit.

“No one on our side is going to talk to you about this,” said Edwards, a former Alabama football player under Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant.

According to the court records, Willoch enrolled at the University of Alabama as a freshman for the Fall 2009 semester, accepted a bid from the University’s chapter of Pi Kappa Alpha, and, in September, was asked to come to the fraternity house for a swap with the Alpha Omicron Pi sorority.

“While at the House, Thomas Scott Willoch was surrounded by members of the

Local Chapter in the main lobby of the Chapter House and made to drink excessive amounts of intoxicating beverages,” the lawsuit said. “As a result, he became extremely intoxicated and lost consciousness on the floor where he remained unconscious and nonresponsive.”

In his lawsuit, Willoch alleges that while he was unconscious, the Pi Kappa Alphas moved him to a truck. While within, one of them opened the passenger door of the truck and Willoch fell out, striking his head on the pavement and sustaining injuries to his head and neck.

The lawsuit alleges that after his injury, Willoch was put back into the truck and driven to his apartment, where the Pi Kappa Alphas left him for the evening. Willoch claims that the next morning, he awoke on the living room floor in great pain and covered with blood and vomit.

“UA is not part of this lawsuit and we have no comment on it,” said Cathy Andreen, director of media relations for the University. “That is our only comment.”

Each of the ten members of the fraternity who are named in the lawsuit declined to comment.

Gentry McCreary, director of Greek Affairs, and Dakota Peterson, president of the Interfraternity Council, which serves as the governing body of fraternities on campus, also had no comment about the lawsuit.

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