Ex-FAMU band members plead "no contest" in Red Dawg hazing

May 17, 2012

Two defendants have pleaded no contest to lesser charges of misdemeanor hazing in the beating of a fellow Florida A&M University band member. Police say fellow band members beat Bria Shante Hunter on Oct. 31 and Nov. 1.

After their pleas in Tallahassee, Aaron Golson and Sean Hobson were sentenced Thursday to 30 days in a work camp followed by 12 months of probation.

Action in the case of a third defendant was delayed.

The two were originally charged with felony hazing in the case of Bria Hunter, a FAMU band member who claimed she was hazed while trying to cross a group within the band called “Red Dawg”, which is composed of students from Georgia. It is not a university-sanctioned organization.

Hunter’s family said she suffered a broken thigh. However, medical reports along with the original Tallahassee Police Department incident report, noted that Hunter suffered no serious bodily injury.

Assistant State Attorney Stefanie Walters also said medical records did not provide the required proof of serious bodily injury, leading the state to also drop the battery charges.

Golson also is one of 11 former band members charged with felony hazing in the November death of drum major Robert Champion in Orlando.