Crime & Courts

Update | USC students charged in October hazing to have bond hearing

Six USC students charged with hazing after a student was hospitalized with beating injuries in October will appear in court this afternoon for bond hearings.

A seventh student had bond set at $1,000 Wednesday and was released, the Lexington County Sheriff's Department said.

Lexington County Sheriff James Metts said Terry Lyvonette Hall Jr., 20, while pledging Phi Beta Sigma fraternity, was strangled with a T-shirt and beaten multiple times with a bat and a wooden paddle while at a West Columbia apartment.

He was hospitalized and told police he lost control of his bowels and nearly lost consciousness.

Some fraternity members charged in the incident slapped and punched Hall more than 100 times, Metts said in a press release.

Charged with hazing were:

  • Brandon Jerraud Barnes, 21, of National Guard Road, Columbia;
  • Brandon Jamal Bomar, 23, of Waddell Road, Woodruff;
  • Brandon Elijah Bradley, 22, of Kings View Drive, Dalzell;
  • Peter Christopher Gaskins, 22, of Durant Drive, Lake City;
  • William Levern Henryhand, 21, of McGregor Circle, Lake City;
  • Travis Reuben Sheffield, 24, of Wateree Trail, Georgetown; and
  • Larry Bernard Singleton, Jr., 22, of Olivia Drive, North Charleston.
  • Bomar was arrested Wednesday and is free after posting a $1,000 bond. The other six turned themselves in and were booked into the Lexington County Detention Center today.

    Hazing, a misdemeanor, carries a maximum sentence of one year in prison and a $500 fine.

    Universisty of South Carolina spokesman Russ McKinney said the Phi Beta Sigma fraternity was suspended from the USC campus last October and remains suspended from conducting any activities here. He said the fraternity’s national organization also has suspended the local chapter.

    McKinney said that Hall did not contact the USC administration about his allegations before reporting it to the Lexington County authorities and that USC had no input into the nature of the charges filed against the fraternity members.

    Now that charges have been filed by Lexington authorities, those students will be required to enter the student disciplinary system.

    McKinney would not speculate on the possible consequences in this specific case. But he did say that hypothetically, students can be expelled from school whether or not they are convicted of violating the law.

    “The fraternity cannot have any type of activity on campus,” McKinney said.

    “They are all currently enrolled,” he said.

    “We continue to make it clear that we consider hazing a very, very serious matter, and we have a zero-tolerance policy,” McKinney said.

    “If we think an incident amounts to hazing, the president is required by the law to notify the State Law Enforcement Division,” McKinney said.