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Fraternity chapter president pleads no contest in VCU hazing death, avoids jail time

On Thursday morning, Jason Mulgrew pleaded no contest in connection to a hazing charge.
On Thursday morning, Jason Mulgrew pleaded no contest in connection to a hazing charge.(Source;NBC12 | NBC12)
Published: May. 5, 2022 at 10:53 AM EDT
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RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - One of the 11 men charged in the 2021 hazing death of VCU freshman Adam Oakes pleaded no contest on Thursday morning.

Inside the Richmond courtroom, a circuit court judge found Mulgrew guilty of the misdemeanor hazing charge in connection to Adam Oakes’ death last year.

As part of his plea agreement, Jason Mulgrew had 12 months of jail time suspended and will have to complete a period of supervised probation.

He also has to have restorative justice conferencing with the Oakes family, one year of good behavior, 150 hours of community service, and hazing presentations with the Love Like Adam Foundation.

According to court records, Mulgrew was the chapter president of Delta Chi.

Oakes died of alcohol poisoning following an off-campus fraternity party.

According to prosecutors, Oakes and two other underground pledges were driven to a house on West Clay Street with “their heads down.”

At this location, prosecutors say Oakes was given a Solo cup with the fraternity’s “family drink,” which witnesses described as “unusually strong.” Prosecutors said Oakes was told to chug this and drink a handle of Jack Daniels with White.

Prosecutors said Oakes’ blood-alcohol content was .42%, which is five times the legal driving limit in Virginia.

Outside the courtroom, Adam’s family grew emotional.

“Hazing is a dangerous, destructive, and deadly tradition in student organizations,” said White. “It doesn’t just occur in fraternities and sororities. It happens in athletic teams, chemistry, and more.”

Mulgrew is the third person to enter a plea following Adam’s death last year. Andrew White and Christian Rohrbach pleaded guilty to charges related to Adam’s death.

“Our family strategically chose this option for these three, Andrew, Christian, and Jason, as a way for them to take responsibility for their actions and to help them shift from being a part of the problem to part of the solution,” she said. “They can use their experience and hopefully what they have learned to help other kids in Virginia,” White said. “Help them see the dangers in hazing and what happens when you fail to call for help or render aid to someone you know is in trouble.”

After the plea hearing, Mulgrew and his attorney offered no comment to NBC12.

Inside the courtroom, Mulgrew offered his condolences to Adam Oakes’ family and said he looks forward in taking part in the Love Like Adam anti-hazing presentations.

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