ATHENS, Ohio (AP) — The former president of a now-defunct fraternity at Ohio University has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from hazing that led to a student’s death two years ago.
Elijah Wahib, 22, of Westlake, pleaded guilty Tuesday to two counts each of felony obstruction of justice and misdemeanor hazing and a single felony count of permitting drug use, The Columbus Dispatch reported. He was sentenced to 31 days in jail for the misdemeanors, with one day of credit, and participation in a drug and alcohol diversion program for the felonies.
Wahib became the fifth members of the former Sigma Pi fraternity to plead guilty to charges that grew out of the 2018 incident involving Collin Wiant, an 18-year-old freshman who was found dead after ingesting nitrous oxide. Authorities have said Wahib told his fraternity brothers to not provide any information to university investigators.
Wiant’s parents, Wade and Kathleen, appeared at the hearing via Zoom from their home in Dublin and addressed the court and Wahib. They said their son’s death “would’ve been avoided with the right leadership in this organization,” adding that Wahib “was elected to lead men and he failed.”
Wahib spoke briefly during the hearing, extending his “sincere condolences” to Wiant’s family.