Family of Freshman Who Died After Fraternity Hazing Receives Nearly $1 Million in Settlement from Virginia Commonwealth University

Adam Oakes

A Virginia school will pay nearly $1 million to the family of a freshman who died after a fraternity hazing incident as part of a settlement agreement.

The agreement with the family of Adam Oakes also requires Virginia Commonwealth University to make additional changes to its fraternity and sorority life. The deal was approved Friday by the Fairfax County Circuit Court, the school announced in a news release.

Oakes, 19, was found dead the morning after attending a Delta Chi fraternity party at the Richmond university in late February 2021.

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A police investigation found that the day before his death, Oakes received a bid to the Delta Chi fraternity and was told to drink a large bottle of whiskey. At some point, he passed out on the floor. In the morning, his body was purple and had no pulse, and 911 was called.

The office of the chief medical examiner ruled Oakes’ death was caused by alcohol poisoning.

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SOURCE: USA Today, Natalie Neysa Alund

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