Last defendants plead guilty in Collin Wiant hazing death case

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ATHENS, OH (WCMH) — The last defendants pleaded guilty Wednesday to charges in connection to the death of Ohio University student Collin Wiant. 

Wiant, 18, a pledge at Sigma Pi at Ohio University, was found dead Nov. 12, 2018. A toxicology report showed he died of asphyxiation due to nitrous oxide ingestion. 

Wednesday marks the end of the cases for former and current Ohio University students connected to Wiant’s death and the fraternity hazing incident, as the following individuals appeared before the Athens County Court of Common Pleas:

  • Joshua Thomas Androsac, 21, of Lewis Center, Ohio, pled guilty to Permitting Drugs Abuse, a felony of the fifth degree; two (2) counts of Trafficking in Harmful Intoxicants, felonies of the fifth degree, Trafficking in Cocaine, a felony of the fifth degree. Androsac also entered a plea of guilty to Hazing, a misdemeanor of the fourth degree and Negligent Homicide, a misdemeanor of the first degree. Androsac was ordered to serve seventy (70) days jail for the misdemeanor offenses. Androsac’s remaining charges will be held in abeyance pending the completions of the Prosecutor’s Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program.
  • Corbin Michael Gustafson, 23, of Furlong, Pennsylvania, entered a plea of guilty to Complicity to Permitting Drug Abuse, a misdemeanor of the first degree. The Court ordered Gustafson’s plea held in abeyance pending completion of the Prosecutor’s Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program.
The attached photo shows an Athens County Court of Common Pleas Constable placing handcuffs on Joshua Androsac as he is taken into custody to begin serving his jail term. (Photo courtesy Athens County Prosecutor’s Office)

Androsac and Gustafson were the final individuals disposed of related to the investigation into hazing and other actions of the Sigma Pi fraternity.

The following individuals previously entered pleas:

  • Zachary Herskovitz was convicted on February 22, 2020, of Hazing, a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. Herskovitz also entered a plea of guilty to Permitting Drug Abuse, a felony of the fifth degree and was ordered to complete the Prosecutor’s Office Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program and held his guilty plea in abeyance, pending completion of the program for the felony charges.
  • Dominic A. Figliola, 21, of Athens, Ohio, entered a guilty plea on February 27, 2020, to Hazing, a
    misdemeanor of the fourth degree. Figliola also plead to Permitting Drug Abuse, a felony of the fifth degree; Aggravated Possession of Drugs, a felony of the fourth degree; and Failure to Comply with Underage Alcohol Laws, an unclassified misdemeanor, which the Court ordered held in abeyance, pending completion of the Prosecutor’s Office Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program. Figliola was also ordered to complete one (1) year of non-reporting probation for the Hazing conviction.
  • Cullen Willi McLaughlin, 21, of Northfield, Ohio, plead guilty to two (2) counts of Possession of
    L.S.D., felonies of the fifth degree on February 27, 2020, which the Court ordered held in abeyance, pending completion of the Prosecutor’s Office Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program.
  • Saxon Angell-Perez, was convicted of Hazing, a misdemeanor of the fourth degree. Angell-Perez also entered a plea of guilty to Permitting Drug Abuse, a felony of the fifth degree and Possession of Cocaine, a felony of the fifth degree, which the Court ordered held in abeyance, pending completion of the Prosecutor’s Office Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program. Angell-Perez was also ordered to complete one (1) year of non-reporting probation for the Hazing conviction.
  • Elijah Robert Wahib, 22, of Westlake, Ohio, entered a guilty plea on June 23, 2020, to two (2) counts of Obstructing Justice, felonies of the fifth degree; Permitting Drug Abuse, a felony of the fifth degree and two (2) counts of Hazing, misdemeanors of the fourth degree. Judge Patrick J. Lang sentenced Wahib to serve a total of thirty-one (31) days in jail for the Hazing Charges and ordered him to complete the Prosecutor’s Office Athens County Empowerment (A.C.E.) Program and held his guilty plea in abeyance, pending completion of the program for the felony charges.

“The fraternity participated in cyclical hazing. Each class was hazed as a part of being initiated into the fraternity and then they awaited the opportunity to inflict the same or worse hazing two years later upon new pledges. The culture of silence and presumed consent with hazing must be stopped and legislative changes are necessary. I have worked to change hazing laws with the Wiant family and with Representatives Greenspan, Edwards, and Boggs, and I am looking forward to the General Assembly passing Collin’s Law, hopefully this year,” said Athens County Prosecutor Keller J. Blackburn.

Under current Ohio legislation, the crime of hazing is a fourth degree misdemeanor. Collin’s Law aims to make hazing a felony. It also proposes to make the act of not reporting known hazing activities a prosecutable crime.

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