here to view a photo slideshow from Friday's hearing.
OROVILLE - Four former-fraternity men pled guilty to misdemeanor
hazing charges today and three also pled guilty to felony
manslaughter charges, following the Feb. 2 death of pledge Matthew
Carrington, at Butte County Superior Court.
The four men of the now-defunct Chi Tau fraternity faced felony
charges for involuntary manslaughter, but entered guilty pleas at
the hearing rather than face the Nov. 2 trial where they could have
received the maximum punishment of four years in prison.
Gabriel John Maestretti, 22; Jerry Ming Lim, 25; and John Paul
Fickes, 20, pleaded guilty to both the manslaughter and hazing
charges, while Carlos James DeVilla Abrille, 22, pleaded guilty only
to the hazing charge.
Further investigation showed there wasn't enough evidence against
Abrille for the felony charge to be appropriate, District Attorney
Mike Ramsey said.
Abrille will serve 90 days in jail, while Lim and Fickes each
received six months in jail.
Maestretti faces one year in jail and a fine of about $3,160.
While standing in the courtroom, Maestretti cried as he read his
He said he wanted to take full responsibility for his actions and
was sorry for the part he played in Carrington's death.
"I will live with the consequences of this hazing for the rest of
my life," Maestretti said.
He apologized to Carrington's family and friends and accepted his
punishment in the hope that it would serve as a warning to others,
Lim was also tearful as he read his statement to the court,
pleading guilty to both charges.
"Nothing I can say here today will bring back Matthew Carrington
or lessen the grief that his family feels. But I want them to know
that I will do whatever I can to inform others of the stupidity and
dangerousness of hazing," Lim said.
Fickes cried as he addressed Carrington's family.
"No words can adequately convey my sorrow and regret. I pray that
in time you can forgive me," he said.