Like many Miamians, you probably read our August 21 story about FIU frat brothers openly selling drugs on Facebook and thought to yourself:Those guys are f---ed
Al contrario, mi amigo. This is Florida, where bad deeds go unpunished all the time and state law practically encourages people to shoot one another.
So it should be no surprise that -- just a week after FIU cops announced they had closed their investigation into Pi Kappa Alpha without any arrests -- those same frat brothers have now escaped academic punishment as well.
After weeks of phone calls and emails to FIU administrators, New Times finally received a response yesterday.
"We are confident that the police investigation was thorough, and had evidence of a crime been determined, we would have supported the arrest and prosecution of any FIU students or others allegedly involved in committing crimes associated with the Pi Kappa Alpha Fraternity matter," FIU Vice President Larry Lunsford said in an emailed statement.
"No academic charges can be placed against students from the fraternity because none of the allegations against the individuals were of an academic nature, but fall under our non-academic student behavior Code of Conduct," he continued. "Violations of the Student Code of Conduct are adjudicated by the office of Student Conduct and Conflict Resolution. Actions by this office are confidential by federal law."
In other words, FIU Pikes will not face criminal or academic punishment but could still be disciplined for violating student conduct. However, the university refuses to say whether it has expelled or suspended any students for conduct violations.
Several current and former FIU students told Riptide they were angry nothing was being done over the Pike scandal, in which frat brothers posted messages on Facebook that appeared to show rampant drug dealing, hazing, and sharing of nude photos of one another's girlfriends.
"FIU has its own police department," said one veteran of FIU's Greek community. "Do you really think they want to go down that rabbit hole? Especially when they didn't stumble onto the problem themselves but had it brought to their attention so embarrassingly?"
"They are all just basically sweeping it under the rug," echoed a sorority girl attending the school. "It's awful."
She said FIU could not be trusted to punish Pikes when the frat's alumni donate heavily to the school.
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"We should be standing united against abuses like these, not standing united to protect these guys," she said. "But money talks, shit walks. That's how I feel. FIU is all about money. When President Rosenberg is giving out graduation speeches, he's basically already asking for donations.
"This just shows that if you throw enough money at the school, you can make anything happen," she said.