FLORENCE, S.C. —
Three college baseball players in South Carolina have been charged with hazing, authorities said.
Florence County Sheriff’s Office officials said Francis Marion University requested an investigation into possible hazing.
The investigation resulted in the arrest of 21-year-old Jon Mitchell Carter, of Hamer; 21-year-old David Tyler Mangum, of Durham, North Carolina; and 21-year-old Noah Hunter Jones, of Greenville, North Carolina, who were all arrested March 6 and charged with hazing.
According to arrest warrants obtained by WMBF, the events happened at the address coinciding with the Patriot Place Apartments, a complex across the street from the college.
The three suspects are accused of “intentionally (striking) an underclassmen member of the baseball program for the purpose of initiation.”
One underclassman player suffered a broken jaw, according to arrest warrants.
The three suspects were released from the Florence County Detention Center on March 6 on $1,000 personal recognizance bonds.
Online court records show the players’ court dates are set for April 29.
FMU spokesperson Tucker Mitchell said the three players were suspended from the baseball team as soon as the Feb. 5 incident came to light. Last week, they were suspended from the university, he added.
According to Mitchell, whether or not the three will remain suspended from the university depends on the outcome of the case.
Mitchell also said that the underclassman who had been injured had returned to class last week.
FMU released a statement on the incident, which is below:
“The Florence County Sheriff’s Office investigated this incident at the behest of FMU and, as always, we appreciate their assistance.
“This event took place off campus and was neither sanctioned nor condoned by FMU coaches or university personnel.
“The actions described resulted from a reckless, immature Saturday evening drinking game at an unauthorized party off campus. FMU is disappointed at what transpired, and at the lack of judgment demonstrated. The University takes this very seriously.
“The alleged actions violate FMU’s long-standing code of student conduct, as well as specific policies governing the behavior of FMU athletes. All FMU athletes review those policies with their coaches at the start of each semester and sign a document acknowledging that they understand the policies and the implications of violating them. In addition, during the COVID-19 pandemic, all FMU athletes signed a COVID-19 pledge, indicating that they would avoid social gatherings and other risky behavior.
“Accordingly, as soon as the sheriff’s office informed the university of the results of its investigation, all three students named in the investigation were suspended from the university and will remain so, pending disposition of these charges.”
The university’s student handbook shows that hazing is considered a university violation. Students who are found to commit prohibited student conduct can be subject to sanctions that range from “written reprimand, loss of privileges, removal from campus residential facilities, restitution, education sanctions, probation, suspension, expulsion or other University sanctions and/or conditions.”
Hazing is also considered a misdemeanor in the state of South Carolina, which carries a penalty of “a fine not to exceed $500 or by imprisonment for a term not to exceed twelve months, or both.”
Florence County Sheriff’s Office – South Carolina
March 8, 2021
At the request of Francis Marion University, the Florence County Sheriff’s Office opened an investigation into the possible hazing of baseball players on the Francis Marion University baseball team. The investigation has resulted in the arrest of three (3) team members, all of whom have been charged with Hazing. According to Investigators, on or about February 5, 2021 at a location off of the Francis Marion University campus, Jon Mitchell Carter, David Tyler Mangum and Noah Hunter Jones are alleged to have intentionally engaged in activity wherein underclass members of the baseball team were struck for the purpose of initiation causing harm to the victims, one of which resulted in the need for medical treatment.
Under South Carolina law, Hazing is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine of not more than $500.00 or imprisonment of not more than 12 months, or both.
All suspects were released from the Florence County Detention Center on March 6, 2021 on $1,000.00 personal recognizance bonds.
SUBJECT: Jon Mitchell Carter, age 21, of 2351 Par Way, Hamer, SC 29547 was arrested on March 6, 2021 by Investigators with the Florence County Sheriff’s Office and charged with Hazing (S.C. Code Ann. 16-03-510). See FCSO Booking Website for additional information.
SUBJECT: David Tyler Mangum, age 21, of 5 Shelburn Court, Durham, NC 27712 was arrested on March 6, 2021 by Investigators with the Florence Count Sheriff’s Office and charged with Hazing (S.C. Code Ann. 16-03-510). See FCSO Booking Website for additional information.
SUBJECT: Noah Hunter Jones, age 21, of 2742 Grover Hardee Road, Greenville, NC 27858 was arrested on March 6, 2021 by investigators with the Florence County Sheriff’s Office and charged with Hazing (S.C. Code Ann. 16-03-510). See FCSO Booking Website for additional information.