updated 8/14/2009 4:58:29 AM ET 2009-08-14T08:58:29

The parents of a Utah State University freshman who died from alcohol poisoning at a fraternity activity have filed a wrongful death lawsuit against the school.

Attorneys for George and Jane Starks say in the lawsuit filed Tuesday that the university's "benign neglect" contributed to the Nov. 21 death of Michael Starks.

Police said the 18-year-old's blood alcohol content was higher than 0.35, more than four times the legal limit to drive an automobile.

Starks was pledging to join the Sigma Nu fraternity. Attorney Charles Thronson says the university allowed the conduct at the fraternity to continue through years of inaction.

University spokesman John DeVilbiss says the school's safety concerns don't extend to students participating in non-university and off-campus activities.

More on: Utah

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