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Penn State Hazing: Attorney General To Appeal Ruling In Timothy Piazza Death

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) - The Pennsylvania Attorney General will appeal a court ruling that dismissed involuntary manslaughter charges against eight fraternity members in the hazing death of Penn State student Timothy Piazza last year.

In March, District Judge Allen Sinclair dismissed involuntary manslaughter and some of the other most serious remaining charges on Penn State fraternity members arrested in the death of 19-year-old Piazza of Lebanon, N.J., who died while pledging the Beta Theta Pi fraternity last February.

"In the interest of justice for the Piazza family, our office today filed a notice of appeal with respect to charges against eight of the defendants in this case," said Joe Grace, spokesman for Attorney General Shapiro.

Authorities said Piazza was given at least 18 drinks inside a 90-minute period, and his blood alcohol was estimated at several times the legal driving limit.

He tumbled down a flight of stairs and fell several other times, hurting his head, authorities said.

Authorities said he was found unconscious in the basement the next day, but it was another 40 minutes before an ambulance was called.

Piazza had a fractured skull, shattered spleen and other injuries. He died on February 4 from traumatic brain injury.

Despite his apparent distress for 12 hours, the grand jury report said, the fraternity brothers did little to help him.

Involuntary manslaughter charges in the case have been rejected twice by the judge. Some members of the fraternity still face charges, including conspiracy, hazing and alcohol violations.

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