Five men arraigned on murder charges in New York hazing death

Story highlights

  • Four of five suspects arraigned in hazing death posted bail
  • A grand jury recommended charges for a total of 37 people in the death
  • Police say Deng suffered injuries during a fraternity ritual on a trip to the Poconos in Pennsylvania

(CNN)Five men were arraigned on murder charges Thursday in the 2013 hazing death of a New York City college student.

Baruch College freshman Chun "Michael" Deng, 19, died two years ago from "complications of traumatic brain injury" during a hazing incident, according to court documents. Police said he suffered injuries during a fraternity ritual on a trip to the Poconos in Pennsylvania.
The Monroe County, Pennsylvania, grand jury recommended charges against a total of 37 people in connection with the death. The fraternity, Pi Delta Psi, is also charged with murder.
    Raymond Lam, 22, entered a not guilty plea through his attorney and posted the $500,000 bail.
    Kenny Kwan, 26, and Sheldon Wong, 23, also posted $500,000 bail but did not enter pleas.
    Daniel Li, 23, did not enter a plea before posting $150,000 bail.
    Charles Lai, 24, was led away in handcuffs after failing to post his $500,000 bail. The charges against the five range from third-degree murder in the third degree to aggravated assault to hazing.
    Wieslaw Niemoczynski, attorney for the fraternity, waived a reading of the charges. A preliminary hearing was set for November 5.
    According to police, the Pi Delta Psi fraternity was conducting a ritual outdoors for new pledges called the "glass ceiling."
    The objective was for Deng, who was blindfolded and wearing a backpack containing a 30-pound bag of sand, to navigate toward someone calling him while other fraternity brothers physically prevented that from happening, police said.
    Deng fell backward, struck his head and was immediately unconscious and unresponsive, according to police.
    He was carried inside a rented house and placed by a fire because his body was cold and wet from the conditions outside, police said. Deng remained unconscious while members of the fraternity researched his symptoms online and found the closest hospital, according to an affidavit in support of the charges.
    At least two hours passed before he received medical care, police said.
    Forensic analysis determined the delay in treatment "significantly contributed to the death of Mr. Deng" and resulted in neurogenic shock, police said in a statement.
    Three fraternity members drove Deng to a Pennsylvania hospital early in the morning, authorities said.