SAN MARCOS, Texas – Texas State University student Matthew Ellis, 20, died Monday at a San Marcos apartment complex following a fraternity event the night prior.
Ellis was a pledge at the university’s Phi Kappa Psi fraternity.
The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has now opened an investigation into Ellis’ death.
“This is an incredibly tragic event, and TABC extends its sympathies to the family, friends, and classmates of Matthew Ellis,” TABC Chairman Kevin J. Lilly said. “I want the Texas State community to know that TABC is working to determine what role, if any, alcohol may have played in Matthew’s death, and that we will vigorously pursue any violations that may have contributed to cutting this young man’s life short.”
Selling alcohol to a minor can result in penalties including the cancellation of a business’s liquor license and possible jail time for the employee who sold it.
“So-called ‘traditions,’ such as forcing a fraternity pledge to over-consume alcohol, have no place at a university,” Lilly said. “Regardless of the outcome of this investigation, TABC will proactively work with universities and law enforcement across Texas to combat and raise awareness of this senseless activity.”
Matt Flores, a spokesman for the university, said Phi Kappa Psi has been under investigation by the university since Oct. 4 for allegations of misbehavior within the fraternity.