RICHMOND, Virginia – The 11 people charged with hazing in connection with the death of 19-year-old VCU freshman Adam Oakes have been released on bail pending their next court date in October.
The court demands that several of the men return to live with their families for surveillance as the legal process unfolds. As a condition of their bond, men must also undergo random drug and alcohol testing.
Nine of the 11 accused of the crime were suspended from VCU following their arrests, the Richmond Commonwealth Prosecutor’s Office confirmed.
Seven of the defendants were arrested in Richmond on Friday and spent the weekend in jail.
Oakes, a 19-year-old student from Loudoun County, died of alcohol poisoning in February 2021. His family said Oakes died after receiving an offer to join the Delta Chi fraternity at VCU and the hazing had played a role in his death.
They said he was told to drink a large bottle of whiskey and that at one point in the evening he hit his head.
His body was later discovered in a house on West Clay Street.
Andrew White, one of the former VCU students accused of hazing and buying alcohol for a minor, surrendered on Sunday evening.
White, who lived and worked in South Carolina, was Adam’s older brother in the fraternity and responsible for Adam on the night he died, according to the Commonwealth prosecutor.
Adam was one of the three “secret hires” who did not go through formal recruitment like the other brothers of the fraternity. He was not required to watch a hazing video provided by the Delta Chi National Section.
The Oakes family, who were in court, said it was difficult to hear how Adam died. The family said they hoped it would never happen again and that those involved in their son’s death would receive the maximum sentence depending on the level of their involvement.
The next hearing of the defendants is scheduled for October 4.
This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email email@example.com to tip.