Ringleader of FAMU Hazing Death Sentenced to 77 Months in Prison

A former Florida A&M University band member was sentenced to prison after being convicted last year of manslaughter and felony hazing in the death of a drum major.

Dante Martin was sentenced to 77 months in prison Friday in the beating death of 26-year-old Robert Champion during a brutal hazing ritual aboard a parked bus following a football game, according to NBC affiliate WESH. Martin was convicted in October during a trial in which prosecutors said he was the ringleader of the ritual.

Martin was the first to stand trial in the November 2011 death of Champion, who was from Decatur, Georgia. The case brought into focus the culture of hazing in the band, which was suspended for more than a year while officials tried to clean up the program.

The mothers of both Champion and Martin were among those who testified for the defense and for the state Friday.

Champion's mother expressed forgivness toward Martin for his part in her son's death.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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