Ex-FAMU band members set for hearing in hazing death case

The Florida A&M marching band was suspended for a year following the hazing death of Robert Champion in 2011. The ban was lifted in 2013.
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ORLANDO, Fla. – Charged in the hazing death of former Florida A&M University (FAMU) drum major Robert Champion, six ex-band members from the college in Tallahassee are due to appear in court Friday for a status hearing.


 The six defendants are facing manslaughter and hazing charges for the death of bandmate Champion in November 2011.

Attorneys for the defendants are discussing potential plea deals in advance of the trial.

Overall, charges have been filed against 15 former FAMU band members involved in the incident.

Eight defendants have already accepted deals while another, Caleb Jackson, pleaded no contest to manslaughter last April and awaits sentencing.

In the wake of Champion's death, the FAMU band was suspended for a year. The university also amended policy and replaced personnel in the hopes of preventing similar tragedies in the future.