Family sues after fatal sorority crash

Oct. 4, 2012 at 3:37 PM

GREENVILLE, N.C., Oct. 4 (UPI) -- The parents of a North Carolina sorority pledge who died in a car accident are suing, claiming hazing played a role in their daughter's death, lawyers said.

Victoria T'nya-Ann Carter, 20, an East Carolina University student seeking membership in the Delta Sigma Theta sorority, was riding in a car with two other pledges at 6:30 a.m. Nov. 20, 2010, on their way to a hair appointment when the driver of the car fell asleep at the wheel. Carter and another passenger died. Carter's parents contend sleep-deprivation -- along with a host of other demeaning acts they call hazing -- was to blame, the Raleigh News & Observer reported.

Carter family lawyer John McCabe said 17 pledges were forced to live in a two-bedroom apartment during "Hell Week" and forced to perform for sorority sisters nearly around the clock. The girls were forced to eat large amounts of food like cottage cheese or a whole raw onion, wear their hair and clothes a certain way and practice a "death march" to be performed by those granted admission to the sorority at week's end.

McCabe said the girl driving during the crash had been forced to stay awake all night practicing the march.

ECU placed the sorority on a two-year probation and the national body suspended the chapter until 2015.

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