Local News

Durham investigating off-campus houses leased by Duke fraternity members

Posted February 3, 2015

— The city of Durham says it is looking for potential violations at about a dozen houses near Duke University's campus where fraternity members live.

Steve Medlin, with the Durham City-County Planning Department, said Tuesday that inspectors want to know if the off-campus houses meet city occupancy code, which specifies that no dwelling can have more than three unrelated people living in it, and whether fraternities are getting permits to hold parties.

Among the homes is one on Vickers Avenue, which Medlin said was brought to the city's attention by Duke. City inspectors found code violations there, he said, and the property owner has two weeks to come under compliance.

About five of the homes are on Chapel Hill Road, including one at 2505 Chapel Hill Road that is at the center of a police investigation into a woman's report that she was raped after attending a party last month.

Medlin said that the city has not found any violations at the residence.

"There was no evidence that could be gathered to show it was a fraternity house. What it showed was there were three people on each lease, and they met the occupancy rules," Medlin said. "It just so happened they were having parties on these structures on Chapel Hill (Road) and therefore, they were not in violation."

Police are still investigating the student's report that she was raped and have not named any suspects in the investigation.


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  • kre2 Feb 4, 2015

    If Coding doesn't work, what about under age drinking. If I am not mistaken, it is illegal.

  • raleighboy524 Feb 4, 2015

    View quoted thread

    Honestly, would you say the same thing if the house re next to yours?

  • dishman Feb 4, 2015

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    Nothing will come of it? Tell that to the fraternities that have been suspended based only on allegations. Or the fraternities at ECU that were just banned from having social activities because another fraternity had an allegation made against it.

  • Steve Faulkner Feb 4, 2015
    user avatar

    View quoted thread

    Other than the one involved in the rape allegation investigation, how do they know which ones are Frat houses? And why does it matter, really?

  • Nan Toppin Feb 4, 2015
    user avatar

    if someone reports a rape at an off campus fraternity house, they are going to come under scrutiny. If they aren't doing anything wrong, nothing will come of it. If they are then they will have to comply with the laws..I don't see what everyone is complaining about. Chances are the authorities did not even know that these homes were being used as frat houses...well guess what, now they know!

  • Edward Levy Feb 4, 2015
    user avatar

    I would bet if the Math team or any Education or sports group rented a house, those same restiction that Frats have would not follow.. I JUST CHECKED, WE DO NOT NEED A PARTY PERMIT IN OUR RENTED HOUSE, NOR ARE WE RESTRICTED TO 3

  • govtpackmule Feb 4, 2015

    View quoted thread

    Agreed. And why do they need to get a permit to hold a party?

  • simplylindsey2010 Feb 4, 2015

    So.............this is a passive agressive way to shut down Fraternity houses, that are off campus. Duke and Durham are admitting that Duke students do not have the maturity to rent a home on their own. Says a lot abot their confidence in the product/student they are producing for $50,000+ a year. Further, are they going to extend this investigation to hosues which are not leased by fraternities but other student groups or just plain students renting? of course not, this is just a witch hunt, to appease the politically correct interest groups.

  • BlahBlahBlahBlahBlah Feb 4, 2015

    View quoted thread

    Great question!

  • gotnoid Feb 4, 2015

    Does this rule also apply to public housing?