The deceased animal was discovered outside the FarmHouse fraternity house on 1 December, the organisation said in a statement, adding that it was “branded with a phrase referencing our chapter in an inappropriate manner.”
Four men — Luke Ackerley, Bennet Fady, Andrew King and Brody Shelby — have now been arrested and charged with unlawful disposal of a carcass, KFOR reported.
All four are members of Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity, where the Stillwater Police Department said they served a search warrant days after the incident.
The two fraternities had reportedly been engaged in a “prank war” with each other.
The four suspects are not believed to have killed the animal. A necropsy conducted by the OSU Animal Disease and Diagnostic Laboratory reportedly found that “the animal was suffering from a natural disease process.”
In their statement, FarmHouse said none of their members were involved in the prank and that they ‘do not condone cruelty or defacing of livestock in any manner.’
‘As a chapter founded on principles driven by our agricultural roots, we’re just as sickened and surprised by this incident as our peers on campus,’ they wrote. ‘It is disheartening to see the disregard for proper animal welfare and treatment displayed by this situation.
The national organisation for Alpha Gamma Rho said in a statement that they were “very concerned” by the incident and would cooperate with the investigation.
“This conduct is inconsistent with our fraternity’s values,” they said. “Alpha Gamma Rho does not condone this behavior.”
All four suspects have been released on bond and are expected to appear in court on 11 March.