Bethesda, MD – Police busted a fraternity party in November where there was so much alcohol present that the air inside the Bethesda home registered .01 on a police officer's preliminary breath tester.
The party hosts, all members of American University’s Sigma Alpha Epsilon (SAE) fraternity, marketed their event on Facebook by posting an invite as “Tequila Tuesday Hoy a las 22:00.”
Police said about 70 underage partygoers, mostly American University (AU) students, were in attendance when they arrived.
Officers could hear thumping music coming from the house, which was located off-campus, a few minutes away from the university, on Massachusetts Avenue.
Police said the six SAE fraternity brothers who rent the house together - Jeffrey Becker, Ashton Acosta, Anthony Santana, Kevin Alkinburg, Matthew Berger, and Tristan Ralph - were hosting a fraternity party at their home.
Police said that when they arrived at the house and knocked, no one answered the door, although they could see several partygoers inside peering through windows. Shortly thereafter, some of the hosts answered the door.
Inside the house, police found the windows covered with insulation and trash bags, and beer cans and liquor bottles everywhere.
The basement floor was noticeably sticky, coated with spilled alcohol, according to court records.
One person jumped out of a second-story window to avoid the police.
Officers also found eight people huddled and hiding inside a bathroom at the residence.
Police set up a number of stations outside of the home, giving preliminary breath tests to the 17, 18, 19, and 20 year olds as they left the party house.
A number of students reportedly vowed to never attend a fraternity party again, according to WJLA.
Police interviewed the six hosts, all of whom are 20 years old, but they refused to tell law enforcement how they obtained that much alcohol.
AU confirmed that Becker, Acosta, Santana, Alkinburg, Berger, and Ralph are all enrolled at the private university.
WJLA checked AU’s publicly accessible fraternity and sorority life conduct status, and found that SAE had been cited with three violations this school year.
Four active sanctions against the fraternity in the form of disciplinary probation, social probation, risk management plan, and notification to headquarters office had all been implemented by the university.
All six party hosts were charged with 126 counts each of allowing underage possession of alcohol, and furnishing alcohol to a minor.
They all face fines of up to $315,000 for the crimes with which they have been charged.