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Florida A&M faces new investigation

Dec. 15, 2011 at 1:56 AM   |   Comments

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., Dec. 15 (UPI) -- The investigation into the death of a Florida A&M University drum major has led to evidence of "financial irregularities" within the university, officials say.

Jerry Bailey, commissioner of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, said the suspected fraud goes beyond the band, CNN reported. He said investigators got new information while carrying out "scores of interviews" on the death of marching band drum major Robert Champion, and officials at the school have been notified of a separate investigation.

"There was evidence gleaned that there were financial irregularities having to do with the band and several other components of the university," Bailey said.

Champion, 26, died last month after collapsing in a parking lot in Orlando. Some students who spoke anonymously said his death might be related to a ritual known as "crossing Bus C," in which a band member has to walk from the front to the back of the bus while being beaten by band mates.

A spokesman for the DeKalb County School District in Georgia, where Champion was once a student, said most band activities have been suspended because of an "inappropriate" incident during the summer, CNN reported.

© 2011 United Press International, Inc. All Rights Reserved. Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI's prior written consent.
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