WUFT News

FAMU president resigns

By on July 11th, 2012

By Lynn Hatter – FPR,  Matthew Peddie – WMFE & Margie Menzel – WLRN

Florida A&M University’s President has resigned in the wake of the hazing death of a band drum major. Lynn Hatter reports President James Ammons’ decision to step aside is the latest in the fallout from stemming from the hazing case.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Meanwhile, the lawyer for Robert Champion’s family says their goal in suing Florida A & M university is to try and eradicate hazing.

Champion was allegedly hazed to death aboard a bus chartered for FAMU’s marching 100 band, after the Florida Classic football game in Orlando last fall.

His family filed a lawsuit against FAMU board of trustees in the Orange County circuit court Wednesday. The bus company and the driver of the bus on the night of the incident are also being sued.

The lawsuit alleges the board of trustees should have known the band engaged in conduct that violated university policies as well as state and federal laws.

Speaking outside the court, Attorney Christopher Chestnut said the hazing culture goes beyond FAMU.

“It’s not just a FAMU problem, it’s not just a Florida problem, it’s an American problem. And so the interest of this family isn’t money. It’s not how much money we can get, it’s how many lives we can effect, how much change we can bring, and how many students we can save from hazing in the future.”

The lawsuit came on the same day FAMU president James Ammons resigned.

The Florida A&M University board of trustees will meet Monday to discuss the resignation of President James Ammons.

Last month the school’s board of trustees gave Ammons a vote of no-confidence.

On Wednesday, after Ammons’ announcement, FAMU Trustee Rufus Montgomery exploded at a board meeting previously scheduled to talk about budget items. He said the board must act quickly on many problems besides hazing.

“For the last seven months we’ve danced around it week after week, problem after problem. This thing has only gotten worse. We’ve got the FAMU students on trial this fall in the Champion case, we have no band this fall, we’ve got a drop in enrollment coming, I read the other day the Florida Senate’s investigating the school. I mean, come on, you all.”

Ammons said he would stay on until October 11 and continue as a tenured professor after that.


This entry was posted in Crime, Florida and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.
 

More Stories in Crime

The portion of the 34th Street wall dedicated to the five victims of the 1990 Gainesville student murders. This mural does not get painted over and is one of the lasting memorials of the murders 25 years ago. Photo by Alex Maminakis. 
Audio: Spencer Mann discusses his thoughts on the 25th anniversary of the student murders and reflects back a bit on his time spent working the case, as well as what the 25 years since it happened have meant for him and the city of Gainesville.

August Marks 25th Anniversary of Danny Rolling Murders

This August, the city of Gainesville reflects on the 25th anniversary of the 1990 Danny Rolling murders. A memorial service will take place at the Baughman Center.


Sexual Battery Case Turned Over To Alachua Co. Sheriff’s Office

A sexual battery incident that occurred Sunday has been turned over to the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office after University of Florida Criminal Investigations Division (UFCID) determined it did not happen on the UF campus.


Captain Dominic Piscitello and Deputy Brandee Smith with Lilly Baumann.

‘The Hunt’ Suspect Megan Everett Captured In Florida

Putnam County Sheriff’s deputies and FBI agents arrested Megan Everett, 23, in Palatka on Aug. 3, for kidnapping her 3-year-old daughter. The child was recovered unharmed, according to authorities.


Grooveshark Co-Founder Dead At 28

Josh Greenberg, co-founder of Grooveshark, was found dead on Sunday by his girlfriend. Officer Ben Tobias from the Gainesville Police Department said investigators did not find any evidence of foul play or trauma when reporting to the scene.


Dwayne Officer

Panama City Beach Man Arrested In Connection To String Of Local Burglaries

A Panama City Beach man accused of breaking into dozens of business across the state of Florida was arrested and is currently being held at the Bay County Jail under a $975,000 bond. Dwayne Bruce Officer, 43, is suspected of breaking into 20 Gainesville businesses the night of June 8.


Thank you for your support

WUFT depends on the support of our community — people like you — to help us continue to provide quality programming to North Central Florida.
Become a Sustainer
I want to support FM 89.1/NPR
I want to support Florida's 5/PBS
Donate a Vehicle
Underwriting Payments