Insurance Company Says it Doesn't Have to Pay for Fraternity Hazing Death of Cal Poly Student Carson Starkey

Comments (0)


Wed, Mar 30, 2011 at 11:01 AM
click to enlarge Carson Starkey
  • Carson Starkey
A little more than two years ago, Carson Starkey, an 18-year-old freshman at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, was found dead in the utility room of a fraternity from alcohol poisoning.

Starkey had been pledging Sigma Alpha Epsilon, and during a ritual hazing dubbed, "Brown Bag Night," he and his fellow pledges were allegedly ordered to sit in a circle and each consume an entire bottle of hard liquor in 90 minutes.

After Starkey died, his family sued the fraternity chapter and its members, claiming they were liable for his death.

But now the insurance company that covers the national SAE fraternity is suing the Cal Poly chapter, saying it doesn't have to pay if Starkey's family wins in court.

According to the lawsuit, filed in Los Angeles federal court, the insurance company Liberty Corporate Capital claims that it does not cover the Cal Poly SAE members but only the national organization.

Furthermore, says Liberty, there are specific exemptions in the insurance policy that enable the company to escape having to pay, namely hazing and underage drinking.

As such, the company is asking the court to declare that the chapter and its members are not insured under the policy and are excluded under the hazing and underage drinking provisions.

Two of the students who were involved with the event the night Starkey died have since pleaded no contest to hazing and were sentenced to probation and less than four moths in jail.

In addition, fraternities at Cal Poly have reportedly run pledge events without using alcohol since Starkey's death.

Related Content

Now Trending

  • Burning Man Shut Down Due to Weather

    The annual Burning Man festival in Black Rock, Nevada was shut down today after light overnight rains left the area known as the Playa flooded and muddy, officials said. Organizers advised festival-goers heading to the annual event to postpone their arrival until at least midday tomorrow. Burning Man was providing...
  • L.A. Cops Knew Miley Cyrus' VMAs Date Was a Wanted Man

    Los Angeles authorities were previously made aware that Miley Cyrus' American Music Awards date, 22-year-old homeless man Jesse Helt, was wanted in Oregon, said Martin Silbernagel, Community Corrections director for Polk County. When asked if the Los Angeles Police Department and the L.A. County Sheriff's Department were notified that Helt had a...
  • Did Miley Cyrus Get Bad Counsel from Charity Consultant on VMA Date?

    Trevor Neilson is big name in celebrity philanthropic consulting, but he's no stranger to controversy. And now he's dealing with a controversy that appears to be of his own creation — failing to fully background-check the homeless young man, Jesse Helt, before letting Helt take the mic for Miley Cyrus...
Los Angeles Concert Tickets