TALLAHASSEE –Florida A&M University’s (FAMU) president, James Ammons, will not be suspended despite an ongoing police investigation into the the death of a drum major that is suspected to be a result of hazing.
FAMU’S board of trustees declined Governor Rick Scott’s advice to suspend Ammons but they did publicly reprimanded him, reported The Palm Beach Past News.
“We take very seriously our responsibility to monitor and protect the integrity of the university,” Board of Trustees Chairman Solomon Badger told FloridaToday.com. “We will stand firm against outside influences, regardless of how well-intended, that lead to detrimental consequences that threaten the viability of the university.”
Robert Champion died on Nov. 19 after FAMU played rival Bethune-Cookman. He was found on a bus outside an Orlando hotel suffering from internal bleeding and shock after being severely beaten. He died in less than an hour, reported 7 News WSVN. The decision to not discipline Ammons comes three days after Champion’s death was ruled a homicide. Champion was 26-years-old and a member of the university’s renowned “Marching 100” band.
Following Champion’s death, Ammons suspended the band and has placed Band Director Julian White on temporary leave. Four students were expelled in relation to hazing but they were later allowed to attend class, after state authorities urged FAMU to not take disciplinary actions until the investigation is complete.