USC student found dead in fraternity house
I reported from the scene for this story, spending around four hours outside of the fraternity house and sending updates and information from the police to my editors back in the newsroom. We were able to break this story live before most major news outlets covered it, and silenced rumors that the cause of death had to do with hazing.
A USC student was found dead at approximately 5 p.m. on Thursday at the Gamma Epsilon Omega fraternity house, according to the Los Angeles Police Department.
Though the individual’s name will not be released until the next of kin have been notified, LAPD said that he is believed to have been a member of the fraternity. LAPD and the USC Department of Public Safety are conducting an ongoing investigation and have not yet confirmed the cause of death.
Paramedics were already on the scene when LAPD and DPS officers arrived and found the student unresponsive. Captain William Hayes of the LAPD Robbery-Homicide Division said that the death is currently being investigated as a possible suicide, and officers do not believe hazing was involved.
Hayes said residents of the fraternity house became concerned because the student had not been seen since 2 a.m., and when they went to check his room, they discovered his body. Additionally, DPS Chief John Thomas said that the information gathered so far indicates that the student’s death was not related to academic pressures.
USC Student Affairs and Student Counseling Services arrived on the scene later in the evening to provide residents of the house with emotional support.
The Gamma Epsilon Omega fraternity, which is unique to USC, is the first Asian-interest fraternity in Southern California. It was established in 1963 and was the first minority organization to have a house on the Row.