Skip to main content

Texas A&M-Commerce calls shooting incident "targeted, isolated," identifies victims

The university confirmed three gunshot victims at a residence hall on campus. There are two confirmed deaths. A toddler at the scene was taken to the hospital for treatment.

Gee Lake at the Texas A&M University-Commerce campus.

Editor's note: this story has been updated with additional details provided by the university

Two women were found dead and a toddler was taken to the hospital after a shooting Monday at Texas A&M-Commerce, according to university officials.

On Tuesday, officials called the shooting a "targeted, isolated incident." Later in the day, law enforcement announced the arrest of 21-year-old Jacques Dshawn Smith for capital murder in connection with the shootings. Smith is not a student at the university.

The victims were identified by the university as 19-year-old Deja Matts and her 20-year-old sister, Abbaney Matts. The 2-year-old child is Abbaney Matts' son.

Deja Matts was a freshman at A&M-Commerce, where she was pursuing a public health degree. Abbaney Matts was not enrolled at the school, according to the university. Smith is believed to be the ex-boyfriend of Abbaney Matts.

At 10:17 a.m. Monday morning, a student called university police from the Pride Rock Residence Hall, a three story co-ed dorm for freshman students. When officers arrived, they found the two women and an injured 2-year-old boy. The boy was hospitalized and has since been released to family.

The school's lockdown, which lasted about two hours, was lifted Monday afternoon.

Classes are canceled through Wednesday.

Texas A&M-Commerce is about 65 miles northeast of Dallas. It's also about 235 miles north of the Texas A&M flagship campus in College Station. The school has about 6,000 undergraduate students and about 4,000 graduate students.

In October, two people died and several more were injured after gunfire broke out at a late-night party in Greenville to celebrate Texas A&M University-Commerce’s homecoming.

Disclosure: Texas A&M University has been a financial supporter of The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan news organization that is funded in part by donations from members, foundations and corporate sponsors. Financial supporters play no role in the Tribune's journalism. Find a complete list of them here.

Quality journalism doesn't come free

Yes, I'll donate today