4

FAMU Scandal: Robert Champion's Death Officially Ruled Homicide by Hazing

^
Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Miami and help keep the future of New Times free.

The autopsy of deceased FAMU marching band drum major Robert Champion has been completed, and his death has officially been ruled a homicide. Medical examiners ruled Champion's death was "the result of hemorrhagic shock due to soft tissue hemorrhage, incurred by blunt force trauma sustained during a hazing incident."



According to the report released by the Orange-Osceola Medical Examiner's Office, the autopsy "revealed extensive contusions of his chest, arms, shoulder, and back with extensive hemorrhage."

No broken bones or damaged organs were found, but Champion experienced rapid blood loss due to the blunt trauma. Champion went into shock after being injured. 

Champion died November 19 shortly after the band played during the halftime show of the FAMU-Bethune Cookman game near Orlando. It's believed the hazing ritual took place on the band's bus after the game. 

The incident has caused the entire band to be placed on suspension. Longtime director Dr. Julius White might be fired, and Gov. Rick Scott has called for the suspension of school president James Ammons. The investigation into FAMU has also uncovered fraud, which is now being handled separately. Three other band members were arrested for a separate hazing incident that also took place in November and that left a band member's leg broken. 

Keep Miami New Times Free... Since we started Miami New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Miami, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Miami with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.

 

Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Miami.