Almost one-quarter of the members of Marching “100” were not students of Florida A&M in November. This revelation comes from the university’s board of trustees this week as new details emerge on the hazing-turned-homicide of FAMU drum major Robert Champion.
One hundred members of the university’s vaunted marching band were either enrolled elsewhere or formerly enrolled at FAMU but not on Nov. 19, 2011, when Champion was killed following a hazing ritual known as “Crossing ‘Bus C.'” It was a few hours after the annual Florida Classic football game in Orlando where at least 13 persons (according to the state attorney’s office, which leveled charges last week) were involved in punching, slapping and kicking Champion. He died as a result of those injuries, according to medical examiners.
Six of the 11 band members who were arrested last week were on band scholarships. All 11 face felony hazing charges with minimum sentences of six years. All of them turned themselves in.
Of the 457 people who want to the Classic that weekend, 331 were FAMU students, 25 were employees of the university, 49 were students of either Tallahassee Community College or Florida State University, and 52 were formerly enrolled at FAMU but not “at the time of the incident,” according to the board. The university stipulates that members of the Marching “100” must be enrolled in a music class.
Another 26 members of the band had been suspended in the days before the game.
Band members had complained about violent hazing incidents within the band in the days leading up to the Classic.