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Baylor Frat Sued for Teen's Binge Drinking

By Andrew Chow, Esq. on March 22, 2012 6:58 AM

Baylor University's Sigma Chi fraternity is being sued in connection with a Texas teenager's alleged binge drinking. Megan Helal, 19, was found unconscious after a frat party and later died, Waco's KXXV-TV reports.

Helal, a freshman at Navarro College, was dating a Sigma Chi fraternity member at Baylor. The couple attended a frat party held at a bar, where Halal tossed back 10 to 17 drinks within a two-hour span, the lawsuit by her parents asserts.

Helal's boyfriend found her unconscious after the party, and she died at a hospital. An autopsy blamed Helal's death on natural causes -- specifically, a heart condition -- but her parents don't agree.

Megan Helal's binge drinking, made possible by Baylor's Sigma Chi fraternity and Mynar's Bar in West, Texas, led to her death in March 2010, lawyers for her parents told KCEN-TV.

Helal's parents' lawsuit seeks more than $50,000 for medical and burial expenses in Megan's death, KCEN reports. The suit alleges negligence and over-serving of alcohol by Baylor's Sigma Chi fraternity and the owners of Mynar's Bar.

In a negligence suit, plaintiffs generally must show that a defendant breached a duty owed to the plaintiffs. They must also show the breach somehow caused the plaintiff's injuries.

In Helal's case, because she was underage, she "should never have been given a drink of alcohol, period," one of Helal's parents' attorneys said. Further, Helal should not have been served alcohol when she was clearly intoxicated, the lawsuit asserts.

"Clearly the bar ... didn't know who the liquor was being served to," the Helal family attorney said. "In addition, they allowed the fraternity to set up bottle service in a little room where the drinking was going on."

Megan Helal's parents filed suit last week -- nearly two years after their daughter's death, and just two days before the statute of limitations was set to expire, according to KVVX. Baylor's Sigma Chi fraternity is now barred from campus because of multiple infractions, including Helal's binge-drinking incident, KCEN reports.

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