Judge pushes trial for final 5 defendants in FAMU hazing case back to September


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ORLANDO, Florida — A judge has pushed the trial of five remaining defendants charged in the hazing death of a FAMU drum major back three months to allow defense attorneys more time to prepare.

Judge Renee Roche agreed during a hearing Monday to delay it until the trial period beginning Sept. 22. Trial had been set to begin next week, but attorneys for three defendants asked the judge for a continuance, citing difficulty taking depositions of potential prosecution witnesses.

Fifteen former band members were charged with manslaughter and hazing in the November 2011 death of Robert Champion of Decatur, Georgia. Seven accepted plea deals of community service and probation for what prosecutors called minor roles.

Jessie Baskin pleaded no contest and was sentenced to a year in jail in March.

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