Crime

Second fraternity brother scheduled to plead guilty in Penn State hazing case

Beta Theta Pi brother Joseph Ems talks with family outside the Centre County Courthouse on Sept. 1, 2017.
Beta Theta Pi brother Joseph Ems talks with family outside the Centre County Courthouse on Sept. 1, 2017. Centre Daily Times, file

A second former Beta Theta Pi fraternity brother charged in connection with the events surrounding Timothy Piazza’s death is scheduled to plead guilty.

Joseph Ems Jr. is scheduled to enter a guilty plea on Aug. 8, according to a court document. The plea is scheduled to be heard by Judge Brian Marshall, who sentenced Ryan Burke on Tuesday to house arrest and no jail time. It is not clear when Ems intended to plead guilty.

The 22-year-old from Philadelphia was bound over for trial on one misdemeanor count of hazing and one misdemeanor count of furnishing liquor. District Judge Steven Lachman dismissed one misdemeanor count of furnishing alcohol to a minor in May.

The two charges bound over, however, are not related to Ems’ conduct toward Piazza. They are related to Ems’ conduct toward pledge Thaddeus Lorenz, according to another court document.

Jay Abom, of the firm Abom and Kutulakis, which represents Ems, declined to comment Wednesday.

Tom Kline, attorney for the Piazza family, did not respond to request for comment.

Attorney Philip Masorti talks to the media about his client Ryan Burke's sentencing in his involvement for the death to Timothy Piazza.

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