Officials investigate hazing rumor in student’s drowning

Author: Associated Press

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) – Bethune-Cookman University is investigating the death of a student to determine whether hazing could have been involved.

University spokeswoman Keisha Boyd told the Daytona Beach News-Journal ( ) that officials have heard “rumors” that hazing could have been involved with the drowning of 22-year-old Damian Parks.

Students who were with Parks say he was pulled out to sea by a strong current. His body washed up on the sand Monday morning.

Parks was reported missing after going swimming with friends at 3 a.m. Sunday.

The newspaper reports the students were part of a step team called Melodic Stepping Experience.

Deputy Chief Ray Manchester of the Volusia County Beach Safety Ocean Rescue says there is no indication hazing took place. He says he met with college officials, who are investigating the claim.

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