Carrboro police said Tuesday they had no evidence that pointed to hazing as a factor in the death of a UNC Chapel Hill freshman and Myers Park graduate who fell from a piece of concrete machinery over the weekend.
But police said they did look at hazing as part of their larger investigation into the death of David Shannon, an 18-year-old from Charlotte who was set to be inducted into the Chi Phi fraternity this week.
“Hazing, in light of Mr. Shannon’s fraternity membership and the timing of the conclusion of the pledge process, has been one avenue that this investigation has explored,” police said in a news release. “It is not the primary focus and there is no evidence at this time to suggest that hazing was a factor in Mr. Shannon’s death.”
The case remains under investigation with police still awaiting, among other things, toxicology reports. Witnesses told police that Shannon was consuming alcohol when he was last seen early Saturday.
Shannon’s body was found late Saturday evening near Brewer Lane in Carrboro, which is not far from a popular bike trail between the town and Chapel Hill. But police said his body was hidden from view because of the layout of the property.
Authorities have said Shannon fell after he climbed a conveyer belt at a nearby concrete plant. He sustained serious injuries in the fall but managed to crawl about 90 feet before he died, police said.
Initially, authorities said Shannon had fallen 17 feet off the machinery. But on Tuesday, police said further investigation revealed he fell from a height of about 40 feet.
As part of their investigation, police are trying to retrace Shannon’s steps before his death. He had attended a sorority function on Friday night and had planned to attend the UNC-N.C. State football game with his fraternity brothers on Saturday.
He was last seen early Saturday at a private residence.
Anyone with information about Shannon’s whereabouts or activities before his death is asked to call Carrboro police Lt. Anthony Westbrook at 919-918-7417.
Services for Shannon, a 2012 graduate of Myers Park High, will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday at Carmel Baptist Church in Matthews. Elisabeth Arriero contributed.