Fraternity member told 911: ‘We have a friend who’s unconscious’

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A Penn State University fraternity member calmly told a dispatcher “we have a friend who’s unconscious” as he summoned help in February for a pledge who would soon be declared dead of a traumatic brain injury, according to a 911 tape released Monday.

The call from Beta Theta Pi member Ryan McCann was made nearly 12 hours after fell face-first down a basement stairway Feb. 2. Piazza, from Lebanon, N.J., died two days later at a hospital 100 miles away.

McCann told a Centre County dispatcher: “He’s … hasn’t moved,” and that they were “probably going to need an ambulance.”

He did not mention Piazza’s name, but told the dispatcher that the victim was breathing and 19 years old.

McCann is among 18 members of the fraternity facing charges in Piazza’s death. He is scheduled to be arraigned Tuesday on accusations he tampered with evidence. He declined comment Monday and referred questions to a lawyer who did not immediately return a phone message.

Authorities say video surveillance shows Piazza stumbling and falling after an alcohol-fueled pledge acceptance party.

Eight members of the fraternity face allegations that include involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault, with some charged with 200 separate counts. Others, including McCann, are accused only of a single charge of evidence tampering.



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