PALO ALTO, Calif. (KRON) — Alumni of Theta Delta Chi Fraternity filed a lawsuit against Stanford University accusing administrators of “arbitrarily punishing the organization” after one of the fraternity’s members died from a drug overdose.
Stanford University imposed a six-year suspension on fraternity TDX in response to the death of freshman Eitan Michael Weiner.
“In its 130-year history, Stanford University has never enacted such a draconian measure against one of its student-led organizations,” attorney Mark Hathaway said. “They have fundamentally violated the rights of Theta Delta Chi members and alumni, and in doing so, have not only suspended the fraternity from campus without cause, but they have also arbitrarily and unjustly tarnished the reputation of the organization.”
Organized as #SaveStanfordTDX, the alumni group contends that Stanford suspended TDX in an attempt to shift blame for Weiner’s death away from the university.
The 19-year-old student overdosed from fentanyl-laced Percocet on Jan. 15, 2020 inside the fraternity house and survived. Two days later, Weiner overdosed again with counterfeit Percocet pills in the fraternity’s bathroom. His second overdose was fatal.
No criminal charges were filed against anyone associated with TDX, according to the alumni’s lawsuit.
Weiner’s friend, Matthew Carpenter, pleaded no contest for his role in selling drugs to four TDX members, including Weiner.
Earlier this year, Weiner’s parents filed a wrongful death civil lawsuit against Stanford University and the fraternity.
There was blood on the bathroom stall indicating that he hit his head and collapsed. His body was not found until a janitor went inside the fraternity’s bathroom, according to the wrongful death lawsuit.
“Although Eitan’s body lay just few feet away, not one of his roommates, let alone anyone else in this busy house, sounded an alarm,” the wrongful death lawsuit states.
The Weiner family’s lawsuit blasted the prestigious private school for allegedly having a “major drug problem on campus.”
“If Stanford had removed the Theta Delta Chi Fraternity from campus in the face of continuous violations of the university’s policies sooner, instead of pandering to donors and other interested parties, Eitan would still be alive,” the wrongful death lawsuit states.
Weiner was part of a quintessential Stanford University family. His parents are both professors who work at Stanford, and his sister graduated from the university in 2019.
TDX alumni say the fraternity did not deserve a six-year ban from campus and the sanctions demonstrate a “gross abuse of administrator authority.”
Hathaway said, “Stanford administrators have taken an increasingly interventionist role in the lives of students and have used this tragic death in the Stanford community as an excuse to try to destroy another traditional Stanford organization whom they ideologically oppose.”