BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (Oct. 8, 2015) — Indiana University students told CBS4 they were embarrassed and outraged by a sexually explicit video that resulted in the expulsion of a campus fraternity.
“It represents Indiana University and just trashes the name. It’s ridiculous,” student Jake Milwit said.
Alpha Tau Omega’s national office revoked the Delta Alpha chapter’s charter on Thursday, after the school announced an investigation into the video, which was posted on social media.
“The actions are contrary to the ideals and principles of Alpha Tau Omega and are highly offensive,” CEO Wynn Smiley said in a statement.
The video shows an ATO member performing a sex act on an exotic dancer, as a crowd of fellow members looks on. Smiley disputed IU’s concern that it may have involved the hazing of a pledge, saying it was a 21-year-old initiated member performing the act and “no pledge was compelled to participate.”
Some members inside the house yelled obscenities at members of the media and made obscene gestures early Thursday night.
At the same time, on the other side of campus, students participated in the annual Take Back the Night event. Focused on sexual assault and promoting a safe environment, organizer Annie Mose said she hoped students would focus more on similar events and not the video.
“It (involves) a lot of organizations on campus that work to create a culture that is respectful of sexual encounters and (to) raise awareness of sexual assault,” Mose said.
She said all of the students she talked to found the video disturbing and contrary to the rest of IU’s campus.
“I do think that the video has alarmed a lot of people and I do think that it does warrant an investigation,” Mose said.
As for ATO, the fraternity has a long history of infractions, including an investigation into hazing and alcohol infractions in 2010 that resulted in all but 20 members of the chapter being kicked out.
“They always had kind of been considered one of the more infamous houses at IU,” Indiana Daily Student reporter Samantha Schmidt said.
Schmidt wrote an article for the student paper in April that detailed the chapter’s history and the uphill battle it faced to remain on campus. It had just come off of a probation that lasted four semesters and the chapter president told Schmidt he was cracking down on conduct.
“He was actually very open with me and very upfront about many of the challenges that they were facing and why he really, firmly believed that they could get through it,” Schmidt said.
Instead, the fraternity now no longer exists at Indiana University, just short of its 100th anniversary this December.
IU officials tell CBS4 that an investigation is now underway into the video and whether any individual students will face punishment.