University of Florida to ZBT Frat: Buh-Bye

UF chapter closed after members accused of spitting on veterans
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2015 10:44 AM CDT
University of Florida to ZBT Frat: Buh-Bye
No more ZBT at U of F.   (Shutterstock)

Future pledges interested in joining Zeta Beta Tau will have to go somewhere other than the University of Florida. The Gainesville Sun reports that the school's chapter of the fraternity is now closed in the wake of an April 17 incident in Panama City Beach in which ZBT members were accused of spitting on veterans and their service dogs, throwing beer bottles at them, and urinating on an American flag. During its investigation, the university had suspended the frat, already on probation for a hazing incident last fall. "I continue to be saddened and disappointed by the reported mistreatment and disrespect of our military veterans," UF President Kent Fuchs said in a statement. "Our university has always honored, and will always honor, the service of veterans." Due to privacy laws, the college says it won't reveal the fates of individual ZBT members.

The head of ZBT's national org also piped in. "We are absolutely disgusted by the accusations that have been made regarding the behavior of certain members of this chapter," Matthew Rubins said in a release, per My Fox Orlando; he adds that while conclusive evidence about some of the worst accusations hasn't been found, the group believes some members made "irresponsible decisions." ZBTers from Emory University were also alleged to have harassed the veterans, though that college has said in a statement that "to date, no evidence has been found to implicate Emory students," WJHG reports. The founder of the charity retreat where the abuse allegedly occurred, an all-expenses-paid vacation for combat-wounded veterans and their families, adds, "They were being treated like the Vietnam veterans were treated." (More University of Florida stories.)

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