Texas A&M Commerce

Shooting victims in Texas A&M-Commerce residence hall were sisters

Feb. 4, 2020
Deja Matts, 19, a student at the university, and her sister, Abbaney Matts, 20, who was not a student, were found shot to death Monday in Pride Rock residence hall.

The two women who were found fatally shot in a Texas A&M University-Commerce residence hall have been identified as sisters, but police have not disclosed what they think led to the shootings.

The Dallas Morning News reports that police identified the victims as 19-year-old Deja Matts and her 20-year-old sister, Abbaney Matts. Deja Matts was a freshman from Garland, Texas, who was studying public health, the university says. Her sister was not enrolled at the school.

Police say they found the women’s bodies in Pride Rock residence hall, a coed residence hall for freshmen, after a student called them at 10:17 a.m. Monday. A child hospitalized in the shooting was identified as Abbaney Matts’ 2-year-old son. but police did not disclose his name. The university says  that family members are caring for the boy.

Police were alerted to a possible shooting Monday morning. In a 911 call, a student said she’d found a hole in the wall of her room when she returned from class.

“There’s a hole through my wall and … on the other side directly across there’s a nick in my calendar, so it looks like something shot through my wall and hit my calendar. And the wall is all broken apart,” the student told dispatchers.

Investigators say the shooting appears to be a “targeted, isolated event.” Police have not said whether a weapon was recovered.

Texas A&M-Commerce is about 65 miles northeast of Dallas.

The university allows handguns in student housing, and licensed individuals may carry concealed handguns on campus, with some exceptions.

A student who wants to store a handgun in a residence hall must provide a safe that only he or she has access to, according to the university’s policy.

The firearms policies are designed to comply with the state’s Concealed Campus Carry law, which went into effect in 2016.

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