Another WIU rugby club member arrested after hazing incident - Quincy News, Weather, Sports, and Radio

Another WIU rugby club member arrested after hazing incident

From left: Sgarlata, Belcher, Landes, Balsala, Lord, Campion From left: Sgarlata, Belcher, Landes, Balsala, Lord, Campion
MACOMB, Ill. (WGEM) - Police arrested another member of the Western Illinois University rubgy club Friday.

Kevin C. Campion, 22, was arrested. A warrant has been issued for the arrest of Steven J. Schroeder, 20, but police said they think he went home after the semester ended. Both are charged with hazing.

Police say a total of seven Western Illinois University students are charged with hazing after one victim was put in intensive care.

Macomb police say on May 2, new rugby team members were forced to drink large amounts of alcohol in a very short time. Officers responded to 301 N. Johnson St. and found an unconscious male. His blood alcohol level was dangerously high, and his condition was life-threatening.

Students from WIU tell WGEM they were shocked to hear of the incident.

"I didn't think hazing was such a big deal these days, but apparently it still is," WIU Sophomore Anthoni Villaruz said.

"It's really unfortunate to hear that some kid is going to go to the hospital just from a sports team just goofing around," WIU Freshman Keith Ritter said.

"To hear that, it kind of puts a damper on the end of the year especially," WIU Freshman Adam Feiner said.

The victim was taken to McDonough District Hospital where he was admitted into the intensive care unit. He was released from the hospital two days later.

The following students had each been arrested Thursday and charged with hazing and providing alcohol to minors:

-Lucas A. Sgarlata, 23, of Sycamore, Illinois
-Aidan T. Belcher, 21, of Elgin, Illinois
-John Landes, 24, of Sycamore, Illinois
-Bradley C. Basala, 19, of Matherville, Illinois
-Jack S. Lord, 20, of Naperville, Illinois

WIU Assistant Vice President of Advancement and Public Services Darcie R. Shinberger says the university has a zero-tolerance policy on hazing, and a hazing policy has been in effect for many years.

Shinberger says the rugby club has been suspended from all activities pending the outcome of a judicial hearing. She says individual and club sanctions will depend on the results of that hearing, but all aports clubs administered through Campus Recreation have guidelines to follow to stay eligible for club status.

Police Chief Curt Barker says this was the first major hazing incident at WIU since 1990, when a student named Nick Haben died from alcohol poisoning after being hazed.

The five members arrested Thursday make their first court appearances June 2. Campion will appear June 9.
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