One of the many exciting aspects of freshman year is determining which clubs and activities you intend to participate in—including the decision of whether or not you’ll pledge. Sadly, two Medgar Evers freshmen say that their decision to inquire about joining Brooklyn-founded sorority Gamma Beta Delta left them in tears and emotionally scarred.
Shawntee Caton, 17, and Gabby Jones, 18, tell the New York Post that they were held for 10 hours by Gamma Beta Delta members after being invited to attend an initiation ceremony at a member’s home. Once they arrived with six other recruits, Caton and Jones say that their bags and cell phones were confiscated because members did not what them to keep track of the time. The teens say that they were blindfolded and individually led into a basement with a radio blaring static. From there, they were surrounded by 20 to 30 members who spoke to them in “nasty” tones and interrogated them about whether or not they’re sexually active, how many sexual partners they’ve had and what their sexual preferences are.
Caton and Jones say that they were also probed about whether they’d be willing to or if they have ever participated in threesomes or orgies. At one point, Caton and Jones say that they were told that the other six recruits were naked and tied to the tree outside and asked if they would be willing to join the others.
“Can we tie you up?” a member allegedly asked.
The freshman say that they were also verbally attacked for not wearing all black as they were instructed to. Instead, they wore black sweaters with white writing. Once the 10-hour ordeal came to an end, the girls, who were in tears by then, say that they were told to “lighten up.”
“We all had to go through this,” one member allegedly said.
But Caton says that the traumatic experience was difficult to get over.
“I’ve never been in a situation like that before, with everybody attacking me and I couldn’t do anything at all,” she recalled.
The pair was first invited to partake in the initiation after attending Taco Night and Game Night with other potential recruits. They say that for the most part, everyone seemed pretty friendly.
Caton’s mother, Alicia Gabriel, who attended the Gamma Beta Delta informational session with her daughter, says that she’s outraged by the entire incident.
“I’m mad as hell,” she said. “I thank God my daughter’s situation wasn’t worse. She doesn’t need to be a part of any group that belittles or tarnishes her self-esteem.”
A spokeswoman for Gamma Beta Delta declined to speak on the incident, but insisted that the organization is “vehemently against any type of hazing.”