Murray native arrested for sorority attack


Jack Epperson was arrested after attempting an attack at Sorority Row on Saturday, Sept. 10. (Jayden Hayn/The News)

Dionte Berry, Editor-in-Chief

A Murray State student was arraigned in court on Tuesday, Sept. 14, after allegedly attempting an attack on female students gathering for Lambda Chi Alpha’s Watermelon Bust event on Saturday, Sept. 10. 

The former student, 19-year-old Jack Epperson, targeted those in the sorority with a Molotov cocktail-style explosive, according to a press release from Kentucky State Police. The attack proved ineffective and only gave Epperson himself burn injuries. He then took out a knife and further attempted to attack the students.

Calloway County District Court Judge, Randall Hutches set Epperson’s cash bond at $50,000, The Murray Ledger & Times reported. Epperson also waived his right to a preliminary hearing and to have his case heard by a grand jury.

After the attack, KSP located Epperson and arrested him. Police transported him to Murray-Calloway County Hospital for treatment of his injuries and then to Calloway County Detention Center. 

There, Epperson was charged with two counts of attempted assault and one count of possession of a destructive device, both of which are felony charges. One count of second-degree wanton endangerment was added at his arraignment, The Murray Ledger & Times reported. Although there were no physical injuries to those students, University administration ensured  students had access to mental health resources after the incident.  

“We are very thankful that this incident did not cause any injuries, and we are providing counseling services and other assistance to those involved,” President Bob Jackson said in a message to campus. “Any student or other members of our campus community may contact University Counseling Services at 270-809-6851 and [email protected] if needed.” 

Executive Director of Marketing and Communication Shawn Touney stressed the importance of Murray State police following the attack

The Murray State University Police Department is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week at 270-809-2222.

Touney said the Greek and Student Life Office has been in contact with the organizations affected.  

“We are very thankful that this isolated incident did not cause any injuries to those attending the event and that the individual was quickly apprehended,” Touney said. 

In light of the attack targeting women, the Gender Equity Caucus made a statement expressing their stance in solidarity with the women who were attacked. 

The GEC also acknowledges the heightened violence toward women and requests for more reporting on these incidents.

“This weekend’s events demonstrate the urgency of a problem that existed long before Saturday’s attempted attack,” the GEC’s statement reads. “Greater transparency beyond meeting minimal reporting requirements and concrete actions to address the needs of vulnerable populations are essential for combating violence already shrouded in silence, secrecy and shame.”

The GEC said they encourage anyone affected by and struggling with gender-based violence or the violence they experienced during the incident or elsewhere from intimate partners to reach out to the Women’s Center at 270-809-3016. The center is located in the Oakley Applied Science Building in Room C102, Lotus Sexual Violence Resource center at 1-800-928-7273 and Merryman House Domestic Crisis Center at 1-800-585-2686.

The attack is still under investigation.

The Murray Ledger and Times reported Epperson will be arraigned on additional charges in Calloway County Circuit Court on Oct. 18 

Stay tuned in to The News for follow-ups on the case.