Loveland man pleads guilty in hazing death of Bowling Green sophomore

The student died in March after drinking a full bottle of whiskey, authorities say.
Published: Oct. 21, 2021 at 5:26 PM EDT
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BOWLING GREEN, Ohio (FOX19) - A Loveland man has pleaded guilty in a case surrounding the death of a student at Bowling Green State University, according to Wood County Prosecutor Paul Dobson.

The student died after a hazing ritual that involved him drinking a full bottle of whiskey, Dobson said.

Aaron Lehane, according to the prosecutor, helped clean up and get rid of evidence after police started a death investigation.

Lehane pleaded on Thursday to eight misdemeanor counts of hazing, one count of violating laws regarding underage consumption and one count of obstructing official business.

He also faced a felony count of tampering with evidence. On Thursday he pleaded down to an amended count of obstructing justice, a misdemeanor.

Eight counts of permitting underage consumption will be dismissed at his sentencing hearing on Feb. 10, 2022.

He could face up to 18 months in jail.

Dobson says the prosecution’s recommended sentence will depend on Lehane’s continued cooperation in the prosecution of the co-defendants.

PREVIOUSLY | Loveland man among 8 charged in connection with hazing death of Bowling Green student

Lehane originally pleaded not guilty in May.

He and seven others were indicted in the death of BGSU sophomore Stone Foltz in March.

Foltz died at a fraternity event in march that involved having new members (pledges) drink “copious amounts of alcohol,” according to Dodson.

“After consuming a full bottle of whiskey, Mr. Foltz was taken back to his apartment and left alone there,” Dodson said. “He was later found there by a roommate and ultimately emergency medical personnel were called.”

Foltz died on March 7 at The Toledo Hospital. The coroner ruled his death as “fatal ethanol intoxication during hazing incident,” Dodson said.

MORE | BGSU permanently expels fraternity accused of hazing death | Parents sue

Lehane was not a student at the time or a member of the fraternity, according to the prosecutor.

“However, he was one of several roommates living in the house where the event took place. He had attended the event and, after police began an investigation, assisted in cleaning the house to get rid of evidence before the police could search the house,” Dodson said.

Lehane is the second defendant to plead guilty in the case.

Niall Sweeney, a housemate and a fraternity member, pleaded guilty in September to felony tampering with evidence and misdemeanor charges, Dodson says.

The original list of charges included first-degree felony manslaughter to reckless homicide.

A trial date for the other defendants is set for Jan. 10, 2022.

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Copyright 2021 WTVG. All rights reserved. FOX19 contributed to this report.