BELLEFONTE -- Penn State fraternity members returned to court Thursday in Centre County for a hearing to determine if they should go on trial for the death of a pledge.
Investigators now believe video surveillance that could prove a Penn State student fell down a flight of stairs after a night of drinking was deleted before police could view it.
For the fourth day, 16 Penn State fraternity brothers took their turn walking past crowds of cameras on their way into the Centre County Courthouse in Bellefonte.
These men are back in Bellefonte for a hearing after being charged in the death of a pledge -- Penn State student Timothy Piazza.
In February, after a night of drinking, the 19-year-old student from New Jersey fell down a flight of stairs at the Beta Theta Pi fraternity house at Penn State. He later died.
With his lawyer alongside him, Gary DiBileo Jr. of Scranton carried a large box with him into court.
Now that DiBileo's lawyer Mike Engle has cross examined, he and over a dozen other lawyers are waiting to see if their cases will go to trial.
"We were happy that was finally out there. He was one of the people that wanted to call 911, who sought help for Timothy Piazza. Unfortunately, he fell in the category as several other individuals who was discouraged by various members of the fraternity," said Engle.
Earlier this year, the Centre County district attorney showed surveillance video from the frat house the night of the fall in court. She's hoping to prove frat brothers hid evidence and were negligent in waiting hours to call 911 after Piazza's fall.
In court Thursday, investigators said they believe video surveillance that could have captured the moments Piazza fell down the stairs was deleted before police could see it.
"That is something that is just unacceptable," said Piazza family lawyer Tom Kline. "If that tape was erased then this cover up is much larger than we even anticipated or expected or have known about,."
Along with the 16 fraternity brothers charged, the Piazza family has been in Bellefonte for every court hearing.
One attorney claimed video showing Piazza walking seemingly unimpaired the next morning was never shown in court. That video was played on Thursday.
"Tim Piazza was, without a question, staggering and stumbling when he came back from the door and any argument to the contrary from the lawyer is just flat out preposterous."
In all, 18 fraternity brothers were charged. Two, including Ed Gilmartin of Scranton, gave up their right to this hearing.