FAMU Hazing Death: Band member to plead guilty in Robert Champion hazing death, lawyer says

Florida A&M drum major Robert Champion during a performance at halftime of the football game against Howard University at Bragg Memorial Stadium on Oct. 8, 2011 in Tallahassee, Fla.
AP Photo/Don Juan Moore
(CBS/AP) ORLANDO, Fla. - A man charged in the hazing death of Flordia A&M drum major Robert Champion is planning to plead guilty and cooperate with prosecutors, his attorney said Friday.

Pictures: Florida A&M University hazing scandal

Caleb Jackson will plead guilty to felony hazing and manslaughter as soon as April, attorney Chuck Hobbs said at a hearing at the Orange County Courthouse. Jackson is currently being held in the Leon County Jail for violating his probation.

"He has two hopes, the first being able to help the state with respect to understanding and getting a clearer picture of what happened the night Robert Champion died," Hobbs said. "He is hopeful that he can play some small part in bringing closure to the family."

Prosecutors said Champion died in November 2011 in Orlando after he collapsed following a savage beating during a hazing ritual. A dozen former Florida A&M band members were charged with manslaughter and felony hazing.

Hobbs said no promises or guarantees were made by prosecutors regarding Jackson's cooperation.

"It would be his hope that by cooperating, such would bode well when it comes time for his sentencing," Hobbs said.

Complete Coverage of the FAMU hazing death case on Crimesider

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