Sorority Sisters Charged With Making Pledge Eat Garbage

Three sorority members at Southeast Missouri State University face charges for hazing a student by forcing her to eat garbage, hitting her and spraying something in her face, authorities said.

The women, members of Zeta Phi Beta sorority, were charged with third-degree assault and hazing, both misdemeanors.

Cape Girardeau County prosecutor Morley Swingle said he was dismayed that hazing practices still continue despite university efforts to stop it. Southeast Missouri State has had a stringent policy against hazing since 1994, when fraternity pledge Michael Davis died after enduring a weeklong hazing ritual of slaps, punches and body slams.

"It is frustrating that allegations like this occur, that hazing is apparently still going on," Swingle said.

In addition to the criminal charges, the university will take disciplinary action that could range from warning to expulsion, said Art Wallhausen, associate to the president at Southeast.

"No victim came forward to us," Wallhausen said. Instead, campus police were alerted by the sorority's national organization.

The national organization suspended the chapter, and the sorority will not be considered a campus organization, Wallhausen said.