Matthew Naquin sentenced to five years in prison

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Matthew Naquin has been sentenced to five years in prison, three years probation and 1,000 hours of community service.

Naquin was found guilty of negligent homicide.

The judge stated that Naquin “has to write a letter of apology to the Gruver’s. For every year he is on probation he must go to 3 separate high schools and give a 1 hour talk about hazing.”

Naquin has been granted bond in this case.

Court is back in session and the judge gave his condolences saying he can’t imagine losing a child under any circumstances

The Judge said,

“there will be people that agree with this sentence and there will be people who don’t agree with this sentence. It is a no win situation”


While making her impact statement, Mrs. Gruver said, “five years will never be enough. In the past two years Naquin hasn’t shown one ounce of guilt. It is obvious that he hasn’t shown any guilt.”

Mr. Gruver asked during his impact statement “for Naquin to get the maximum sentence.”

Mr. Gruver went on to say his family is in pain everyday because of Naquin’s actions.

State prosecutor Morgan Johnson followed and said that a “lesser sentence will depreciate the seriousness of Naquin’s crime.”

Johnson said,

Naquin’s “behavior was serious, dangerous and fatal.”

After taking the stand, Matthew Naquin gave his condolences to the Gruver’s.

Naquin continued by saying “he is a different man than he was two years ago when this ‘process started.’”

Naquin spoke to the judge:

“Your honor I invite you to look beyond the surface of this issue. I believe it’ll be much more beneficial to society to help me address the issues [than to be in jail].” Naquin went on to say whatever the judge decides he will find peace with it.


Matthew Naquin will be sentenced Wednesday morning after his original sentencing was postponed.

Photos courtesy of Kennedi Walker

Naquin was scheduled to be sentenced on October 16th but then pushed back due to an illness in his family.

The 21-year-old was found guilty of negligent homicide in July for his role in the fatal overdose of 18-year-old Maxwell Gruver that happened in 2017.

Investigators say Naquin forced Gruver to drink grain alcohol during a hazing ritual known as “bible study” then did not take him to a hospital when he became unresponsive.

Soon after his death, the Max Gruver Act, along with other anti-hazing legislation, was signed into law by Governor John Bel Edwards in 2018 and applies to fraternities, sororities, athletic groups, and student organizations.

The act addresses “criminal hazing,” making it a punishable offense with a fine up to $10,000 dollar fine along with jail time.

Naquin will be sentenced around 9 a.m. at the 19th Judicial Courthouse in Downtown Baton Rouge and he is facing up to five years in prison.

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