Two North Carolina State University freshmen and a sophomore spent the night in jail after being arrested early Wednesday on charges that they broke into a fraternity house to steal a group photo of the members.
Christopher Jerome Lyle of Asheville, Matthew Thomas McGovern of Jacksonville and Jackson Reeves Proctor of Charlotte were arrested by Raleigh police at the Delta Sigma Phi house at 1526 Tryon Road.
Lyle and McGovern are 18. Proctor is 19.
Each of the three was charged with second-degree burglary and felony larceny and held in lieu of $5,000 bail pending a court appearance.
The university lists Lyle as a freshman in the Poole College of Management. A directory says McGovern, a freshman, and Proctor, a sophomore, are in the College of Engineering.
Arrest warrants said that what police called a “composite photo” of Delta Sigma Phi members was worth only $20. However, state law makes a felony of any theft committed after breaking into or entering a place where people can sleep.
Other items were taken from the frat house, and police may be looking for more suspects, according to a member of the chapter’s Alumni Control Board who asked that his name not be used. The non-profit corporation own the property.
Police confirmed that the incident had been turned over to detectives for further investigation, but they declined to discuss details.
Delta Sigma Phi lost its recognition from NCSU in September after the fraternity’s national office revoked its charter, and the charge of second-degree burglary indicates no one was in the frat house when the break-in happened.
The alumni member confirmed that no one is living in the building now, but added that the building has monitored security.
When the national organization took away the charter for the NCSU house, designated as the Rho chapter, it issued a statement saying:
“This decision, while extremely difficult, was made in cooperation with the chapter’s alumni volunteers after repeated attempts of corrective action to address ongoing behavioral concerns of members and repeated university conduct violations.”
In January 2015, a woman told NCSU police that she had been sexual assault during a party at the fraternity house, which was once the Colonial Pines Hotel, built in 1930.
“The National Fraternity determined, together with North Carolina State University and the Alumni Corporation Board, that such ongoing conduct presented a health and safety concern for our members and guests, and that the chapter membership was not committed to upholding the expectations provided to them. There are good men from Rho Chapter who now must pay a great price for the actions of other members; we are truly disheartened that those brothers will lose this undergraduate component of the Fraternity experience.”
Delta Sigma Phi says its mission is “building better men.”
The national office said the Rho chapter would do that when the fraternity returns to NCSU, though neither the fraternity nor the university have set a time for that to happen.