Philadelphia man pleads guilty to hazing in Penn State frat death case

Joseph Ems, left, arrives for his preliminary hearing in Bellefonte, Pa., Monday, June 12, 2017.

A Penn State fraternity member awaits sentencing after pleading guilty to charges filed following a pledge's death after a night of drinking and hazing last year.

Joseph Ems Jr. pleaded guilty Wednesday to misdemeanor hazing and furnishing alcohol to a minor.

He was charged as a result of the investigation into the death of 19-year-old Tim Piazza of Lebanon, New Jersey.

Piazza suffered severe head and abdominal injuries in February 2017, the night he consumed a dangerous amount of alcohol at the Beta Theta Pi house.

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1st sentencing in Penn State hazing case. Tamala Edwards reports during Action News Mornings on July 31, 2018.



Ems, a 22-year-old who lives in Philadelphia, is scheduled for sentencing Sept. 27.

He's the second member of the now-closed fraternity to plead guilty.

The other, 21-year-old Ryan Burke of Scranton, was sentenced last week to house arrest and probation for four counts of hazing and five alcohol-related violations.

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