Florida A&M University

Caleb Jackson was one of 15 people arrested for the Nov. 2011 hazing death of FAMU Drum Major, Robert Champion.
Leon County Jail / Leon County Sheriff's Office

Update 4:37 pm:  FDLE says it has an eighth person in custody.

Aaron Golson, B/M, DOB, 6/20/92, Gadsden County Jail

Update 2:40 pm:  Seven out of the 11 people facing felony hazing charges in the death of FAMU Marching 100 Band Drum Major Robert Champion have been taken into custody.

Of the remaining four, three are out-of-state.

Tony Levell

Thirteen people are facing charges in the hazing-death of a Florida A & M University band drum major. Robert Champion died following a beating aboard a band bus in Orlando in November. Now as Lynn Hatter reports, the charges range from misdemeanors to felonies in connection to the case.

Tony Levell

Update: 4:50 pm:   The Leon County Sheriff's office says they've taken two people into custody in connection with the Champion case.  They are 23-year-old Caleb Jackson and 24-year-old Ricky Wills. Both are charged with felony hazing relating in death.

Florida A&M University is looking for ways to deal with legislative budget cuts and a deficit in its athletics program. Lynn Hatter reports the school is considering increasing tuition, and trying to find ways to deal with the expected loss of revenue from the absence of its main fall attraction: the band.

Governor Rick Scott is criticizing a decision by the Florida A&M University Board of Trustees to allow its hazing task force to meet in private. The Board approved a request by the task force to be designated as a “fact-finding” commission, which allows it to avoid Florida’s Sunshine Laws. Lynn Hatter reports.

When FAMU’s board of trustees approved the plan to allow the task force to meet in private, only two members voiced opposition to the move.

Florida A&M University has placed two professors involved in a 2010 hazing incident on administrative leave.  Lynn Hatter reports according to a Tallahassee Police Department Incident Report, pledges of a fraternity associated with the school’s marching band were slapped on their backs and necks at an event held off-campus at the home of one of the faculty members.

The Tallahassee Police Department has released an incident report that cites two Florida A&M University music department faculty members as suspects in a hazing event that took place in 2010. According to the report, pledges of a fraternity associated with the school’s marching band were slapped on their backs and necks at an event held off-campus at the home of one of the faculty members. Lynn Hatter has more.

Florida A&M University has approved a plan changing the mission of its hazing task force. Lynn Hatter reports the change steers the committee away from its original task of delivering “best-practices” recommendations and also allows it to meet in private.

Under the new designation of a “fact-finding” mission, FAMU’s anti-hazing task force does not have to hold public meetings. University trustee Belinda Shannon says the change will allow the committee to meet as “expeditiously as possible.” But the move has its critics, like fellow trustee Rufus Montgomery.

Florida’s 11 public universities will lose another 300-million dollars for the upcoming fiscal year. That includes a double-whammy for Florida’s Capital city, home to two of those institutions. The loss of state revenue has both schools looking to their students to make up some of the difference, and as Lynn Hatter reports, students and community and state colleges will also be asked to pay more.

Florida A&M University has received another clean audit from the state. Lynn Hatter reports the latest report marks the fourth one in a row the school has gotten since it came back from a series of blistering reports that almost resulted in the loss of its accreditation back in 2006.


Almost a decade after it was created the board that oversees the state university system is still working to get its footing. Over the past few months, conflicts and scandals at some of the schools have made state and national headlines. And as Lynn Hatter reports, the board’s chairman says his group should have more authority when it comes to the affairs of Florida’s universities.

Four members of the Florida A&M University marching band have been expelled from the university after being charged with misdemeanor hazing. Lynn Hatter reports the dismissals are the latest in the fallout from the death of one of the band’s drum majors back in November.

The four students charged with hazing pledges of a Florida A & M marching band club will have a chance to appeal their dismissal before a student judicial committee.

In a new twist to the ongoing investigation into the hazing death of a Florida A&M University band member, the family is now saying that he may have been targeted because of his sexuality. Lynn Hatter reports Robert Champion died in November following a football game in Orlando. The family is preparing to sue the bus company that transported the band to and from the game.

FAMU BOT gets update on hazing case

Jan 9, 2012

The Florida A&M University Board of Trustees met Monday  to discuss the ongoing investigation into the hazing-related death of school band drum-major Robert Champion. The University’s Dr. Larry Robinson chairs the school’s Internal Crisis Management Committee. Over the past weeks he’s spoken with other universities and says hazing may not be limited to fraternal organizations.

Two of Tallahassee's higher education institutions have been ranked among the nation's most affordable schools. Lynn Hatter reports when it comes to paying for college, many of the best values can be found in Florida.

Florida State University and Florida A&M University have been ranked among some of the nation's most financial friendly colleges and universities. FSU's ranking comes from Kiplinger's Personal Finance Magazine, which placed it as the 18th most affordable college in the nation. Florida A & M's credits come from JET magazine.