At around 1:07 a.m. on Sunday, Feb. 23, an argument allegedly began at the residence at 63 Iron St. in Bloomsburg, according to BloomUtoday. It escalated as Justin Weider, a sophomore football player at Kutztown University, allegedly punched a man in the head, knocking him unconscious. Reportedly, several people then attempted to remove Weider from the residence, prompting him to get upset and for other members of his group, which included other members of the KU football team, to join in the fight.
The fight continued outside, and a few BU students were critically injured, including Donald Hoover and freshman Jackie Lithgow, 19. Lithgow was taken first to the hospital in Bloomsburg and was then flown to Geisinger Medical Center in Danville via Lifeline. He suffered from a fractured skull and bleeding in parts of the brain. He was put on a ventilator and entered an induced coma. He has since been on the slow road to recovery, and his family is keeping daily track of this progress in a blog at prayforjackie.com
On Thursday, Feb. 27, Angel Cruz, the KU freshman was allegedly seen by numerous people to punch Lithgow in the head with extreme force, was arrested in Kutztown and charged with aggravated assault, simple assault, disorderly conduct, and defiant trespassing, BloomUtoday reported. The next day, Weider was arraigned and charged with assault, simple assault, disorderly conduct, and defiant trespassing. Cruz and Weider were jailed in Columbia county prison with bail set at $150,000 and $100,000, respectively.
Lithgow, a legacy for the Zeta Psi fraternity, had just received his bid to pledge to Zeta Psi according to Jenna Lemoncelli, a member of greek life and of the BU Greek Alumni Association. The Bloomsburg University Greek Alumni Association has rallied around his cause and is raising as much awareness as they can. There are also multiple fundraising efforts to help the Lithgow family. You can read more in Audre Noll’s article.
Nicholas Cellucci is in the class of 2016 at Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. He is studying Mass Communications and is the Executive Producer for BUnow’s Radio section.