Wrongful-death lawsuit involving Carney’s son settled

DOVER — Gov. John Carney’s son has reached a settlement in a wrongful death lawsuit involving a fraternity pledge at Clemson University.

In court documents filed last month in Pickens County, South Carolina, the parents of the late Tucker William Hipps indicated they had settled with Samuel Carney, several other individuals, Sigma Phi Epsilon fraternity and Clemson.

The settlement amount with Clemson was $250,000, but the total agreed to with the other parties was not disclosed.

Mr. Carney, whose LinkedIn profile indicates he graduated from Clemson in 2017, was one of three individuals named as a defendant in a March 2015 lawsuit. The suit claimed Mr. Carney was culpable in the death of Mr. Hipps on Sept. 22, 2014, when Mr. Hipps fell off a bridge during an early-morning run that was part of a hazing ritual.

The lawsuit alleged the defendants did not make a serious effort to find Mr. Hipps and failed to alert authorities. There were no criminal charges in the incident.

“Tucker’s fall, injuries and death were the direct and proximate result of, were due to and occasioned by, the negligence, gross negligence, recklessness, willfulness and wantonness of the defendants,” the initial filing, which requested damages of at least $25 million, stated.

Many of the proceedings of the case were deemed confidential. A trial was scheduled to begin Oct. 16 or later before the case was settled.

Gov. Carney’s office referred a request for comment to Samuel Carney’s lawyer, Troy Tessier.

“After more than two years of litigation, the plaintiffs obtained an offer of settlement from the insurers of the various defendants and were able to reach a mutually acceptable resolution to this case at a mediation in late July,” Mr. Tessier wrote in an email.

“The court approved the settlement in August. There have been no findings of wrongdoing by any party. It is our hope that the settlement will bring some closure and peace to all whose lives were impacted by this tragic event. The case has been dismissed.”

Reach staff writer Matt Bittle at mbittle@newszap.com

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