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NC State suspends fraternity over ‘deeply troubling’ notebook

cseward@newsobserver.com

N.C. State University has suspended a fraternity while school officials investigate a notebook that contains sexually offensive and racist comments, the university said Friday.

Pi Kappa Phi was the second Greek organization suspended this month, and the school late Friday banned alcohol at social events for most of NC State’s fraternities, The Associated Press reported. The ban doesn’t include historically black Greek organizations.

The university described the notebook linked to the school’s chapter of Pi Kappa Phi as “an apparent pledge book.” Officials said they will conduct interviews to determine who is responsible for its content.

Television station WRAL has reported that a series of quotations is written in the notebook, including “if she’s hot enough, she doesn’t need a pulse” and “that tree is so perfect for lynching.”

“NC State does not condone intolerant behaviors directed at any members of the community, and the content in the book that surfaced Thursday night is deeply troubling,” Mike Mullen, dean of students and vice chancellor for academic and student affairs, said in a statement.

A woman told WRAL that her co-workers found the notebook at a restaurant near campus.

Under the university’s interim suspension, Pi Kappa Phi can’t have social or formal programs, and it can’t take part in community service, fundraising and recruitment activities.

The national Pi Kappa Phi organization also has placed the school’s chapter on an interim suspension.

Mark E. Timmes, chief executive officer of the national fraternity, called the quotes “reprehensible and unacceptable” in a statement Friday: “These statements are inconsistent with the values of Pi Kappa Phi and will not be tolerated.”

Timmes’ statement said the fraternity’s members have been told to cooperate fully with the university’s investigation.

A man who answered the phone at a number listed on the chapter’s website referred all questions to the national organization.

There were 66 members of the Pi Kappa Phi chapter during the 2013-14 academic year, according to an annual report from NCSU’s Greek Life department.

The fraternity chapter is the second at NCSU to be suspended this month. The Alpha Tau Omega chapter was suspended after police found drug paraphernalia, white powder and an orange liquid during a search. Police searched Alpha Tau Omega after a woman said she was sexually assaulted there.

Several other NCSU fraternities are currently suspended. Phi Gamma Delta is on probation and subject to alcohol restrictions, and Phi Beta Sigma is suspended until 2018 for a hazing incident. Theta Chi is suspended pending the investigation into a 2014 allegation of sexual assault.

Hankerson: 919-829-4826;

Twitter: @mechelleh

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