Detective describes probe into Penn State pledge’s death

FILE – In this April 4, 2017, file photo, Penn State's former Beta Theta Pi fraternity house on Burrowes Road sits empty after being shut down in State College, Pa. A preliminary hearing is set to resume Monday, July 10, for Beta Theta Pi fraternity members who are facing charges in connection with the February death of a pledge after a night of drinking. (Abby Drey/Centre Daily Times via AP, File)

BELLEFONTE, Pa. (AP) – A police detective is on the stand for a third day in a preliminary hearing for a Penn State fraternity and 16 members accused in the death of a pledge.

State College Police Detective Dave Scicchitano is being cross-examined by defense attorneys Tuesday in a hearing to determine if there’s enough evidence to send the case to county court for trial.

Lawyers for members of now-shuttered Beta Theta Pi are asking Scicchitano about his investigation into the February death of Tim Piazza after a night of heavy drinking.

The fraternity and some of the members are accused of involuntary manslaughter and aggravated assault, while others face less serious charges.

Piazza, a resident of Lebanon, New Jersey, ingested a dangerous amount of alcohol and was injured in a series of falls.

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