Preliminary trials to begin in Penn State hazing death

Evelyn Piazza, seated with her husband James, and son Michael, speaks during an interview on Monday May 15, 2017, in New York. The Piazza's talked about Timothy Piazza, 19, a brother, son and Penn State sophomore who died in February after he was put through a hazing ritual at his fraternity house and forced to drink dangerous amounts of alcohol in a short amount of time. (Bebeto Matthews/AP Photo)

Evelyn Piazza, seated with her husband James, and son Michael, speaks during an interview on Monday May 15, 2017, in New York. The Piazza's talked about Timothy Piazza, 19, a brother, son and Penn State sophomore who died in February after he was put through a hazing ritual at his fraternity house and forced to drink dangerous amounts of alcohol in a short amount of time. (Bebeto Matthews/AP Photo)

Hearings related to the hazing death of Penn State sophomore Timothy Piazza will begin Monday in Centre County Court.

Piazza died in February after falling down stairs while dangerously intoxicated during a hazing ritual at campus fraternity Beta Theta Pi. He was 19.

No one at the fraternity called for help until the next day; according to a grand jury report, some attempted to cover up the situation.

All told, 18 Penn State students face charges in connection with Piazza’s death. Those range from involuntary manslaughter to aggravated assault.

At their preliminary hearings, the presiding judge will decide whether there’s enough evidence in the case before moving to a full trial.

An official with the Centre County Court System said the plan is to hear from witnesses on all 18 defendants in one day.

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