Madison County Prosecutor Steve Pronai will meet with officials from the University of Dayton this week to discuss possible criminal charges against 80 students who allegedly vandalized a Choctaw Lake mini-mart in a drunken rampage on Saturday, Nov. 17.
Two busloads of University of Dayton students allegedly trashed a local mini-mart.
A sheriff’s report said two busloads of students, both men and women, stopped at Lake Side Plaza, 3180 Old Columbus Road, around 5 p.m., following an outing to Columbus. All were intoxicated. At least 33 were under the legal drinking age. However, the report did not list ages for all 80.
All were associated in some way with Sigma Chi fraternity.
On Wednesday, the university suspended the fraternity, pending results of an investigation by the U.D. Department of Public Safety, published reports said.
Trouble surfaced at 5:25 p.m. Nov. 17 when a Lake Side employee called 9-1-1, saying a large group of people were drunk and fighting in the store. Additional 9-1-1 calls said people were damaging the business and “flashing” their genitals to customers in the parking lot.
Deputy Vaughn Apel arrived at the store to find people running in and out, yelling obscenities and standing on vehicles in the lot and on fuel pumps. Some fled to the waiting buses when they spotted Apel.
Inside, Apel saw broken glass and liquid on the floor. Two men were urinating openly. A check of restrooms showed urine on the floor and walls and used condoms in the sink. Some students were allegedly seen having sex in a nearby dumpster. A large number of open beer cans were left abandoned in the store’s walk-in cooler.
Four men who said they were in charge of the group provided deputies with details of the trip to Columbus and offered to pay the business for damages.
Deputies John Lisska and Jacob Gibson arrived to take photos of the scene and collect information on the 80 riding on the buses. The students were advised of their rights and told charges may be filed.
A university spokesperson said last week behaviors described in the initial report are “unacceptable and in violation of the student code of conduct and will be dealt with swiftly.”
Sheriff Jim Sabin remains puzzled about circumstances that led to the incident. He questioned why those driving the buses and supervising the 80 students passed up larger restroom facilities at the U.S. Route 42 and Interstate 70 intersection for a “potty stop” at small, out-of-the-way Lake Side Plaza.
A rest stop just a few miles farther west on the Clark-Madison county line offered another opportunity for the students to relieve themselves, Sabin noted.
Via Madison Press