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BTP Alcohol Case Ends Without Trial

By Susan Buchman

James B. Williams '99 yesterday accepted a continuance without finding on a charge of selling alcohol to a minor.

The proceedings in Roxbury District Court resulted from a July 17 incident at Beta Theta Pi. A Boston University police officer was seriously injured while avoiding filled beer bottles and cans thrown from BTP's roof.

Williams, a BTP member, was accused of purchasing a keg of beer that was consumed by underage summer residents who threw bottles at BUpolice.

On Monday, Williams appeared before Roxbury District Court Judge Dolan. Williams took continuances without a finding on the alcohol charge and an unrelated assault charge.

Prosecutor Victor Theiss said that a continuance without a finding means that if Williams behaves for a one-year period, the charges will be dropped. Williams must also pay $160 to cover court costs and witness fees.

Judge Dolan agreed to the continuance, saying that Williams' enrollment at MIT "signals to me that [Williams is] a smart kid" and that he "wouldn't want to have to see [Williams] carry a conviction."

Williams swore under oath that he understood he was waiving his right to a trial by jury by accepting the continuance.

Williams was not the only one punished for the July 17 incident, which sent BU police officer James Barry to the hospital with a ruptured disc. In August, the Boston Licensing Board banned alcohol at the Bay State Road fraternity until 2001.

In addition to the alcohol ban, the board ordered the house's roof deck dismantled and banned the fraternity from housing summer residents next year. At the hearing, BTPofficials testified that summer residents were the only ones who participated in the incident.

The Interfraternity Council fined BTP$1,000 for the incident as well as requiring 30 hours of community service by 90 percent of BTPmembers before December 19.