History of problems uncovered with Texas State Greek system

A Greek system is in crisis at Texas State University following the sudden death of a 20-year-old business major who attended a fraternity event. , it's not the first time the university has had problems with its Greek community.

SAN MARCOS - KENS 5 has uncovered new details behind a decision to suspend all fraternity and sorority activity at Texas State University.

That decision was sparked by the death of 20-year-old business major Matthew Ellis, who died hours after attending a Phi Kappa Psi fraternity event off-campus.

Texas State University President Denise Trauth's decision to suspend all fraternities and sororities on Tuesday is not the first time the university has taken action against its Greek system. 

KENS 5 learned in the last three years more than a dozen Texas State University fraternities and sororities have been punished for hazing.

Texas State University officials said Phi Kappa Psi was under investigation for an incident reported in September.

They won't discuss the nature of the allegations, but the national office of Phi Kappa Psi was contacted last month and suspended the Texas State chapter last week.

"There was a directive that came from the national office to the fraternity to cease operations or at least cease social functions and either somebody decided to disregard that, ignore it, or defy it," said Matt Flores, Texas State University spokesperson.

Police say Matthew Ellis, 20, was at a Phi Kappa Psi event hours before his body found at a friends apartment off Post Road in San Marcos Monday morning.

Investigators believe alcohol may have contributed to Ellis' death.

Toxicology results should be back within the next few weeks.

“This is an ongoing investigation, and it’s too early to know if criminal charges will be warranted,” said San Marcos Chief of Police Chase Stapp. “Once all the evidence is known, if we have probable cause to file charges we’ll work with the district attorney’s office to move forward at that time.”

As for the fraternity event where investigators believe Ellis became lethally intoxicated, Flores said, "Any Greek organization, for that matter any student organization, has to register an event before they have an event. This was a non-registered event."

A family friend, who wants her identity concealed out of fear of retaliation toward her child, a Texas State student, told KENS 5 the death of Matthew shocked everyone.

"Matthew was a sweet young man, he was a gentleman, he was old-school, his parents did a great job in raising him."

The friend's fear is Matthew was trying to fit in and overdid it, or worse, was forced to drink.

"There was no way Matt over-drank, that Matt just drank too much and did not know his limit. This was supposed to be his brotherhood, his brotherhood that was supposed to protect him, his brotherhood that he so much wanted to be a part of that he trusted in them."

A vigil to honor Ellis' life was scheduled to occur tonight on the campus of Texas State University. 

© 2017 KENS-TV


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