Family Settles Suit Against Clemson U. in Fraternity Pledge’s Death

The family of a Clemson University fraternity pledge who died three years ago has agreed to settle its lawsuit against the university, the Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity, and several of its members, the Independent Mail reported.

Tucker Hipps, a 19-year-old sophomore, was found dead in Lake Hartwell after going on a pledge run with about 30 members of the fraternity. His parents say they believe his death was a result of hazing.

Cindy and Gary Hipps settled their lawsuit — which sought $25 million in damages — early this month. The university will pay the family $250,000.

Clemson will also fund a $50,000 endowment for a Palmetto Boys State student to attend the university and will dedicate a pew in the Cadden Chapel to Mr. Hipps. Under the settlement, Sigma Phi Epsilon is developing a “case study on Tucker’s experience” in order to better train the fraternity’s regional directors, The Greenville News reported. The family will also work with Clemson to create a golf tournament in Mr. Hipps’s memory.


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