YPSILANTI (WWJ/AP) – Three Eastern Michigan University football players have been charged with assaulting the cousin of a man convicted of killing their teammate, Demarius Reed.
Court records show that Darius Scott, Quincy Jones and Jairockeis Jones are charged with aggravated assault in connection to last Friday’s attack on 24-year-old Demarko Taylor, The Ann Arbor News reported.
The players have a pretrial hearing Monday.
Taylor was a prosecution witness at a probable cause hearing for Kristopher Pratt and Ed Thomas in the Oct. 2013 killing of Reed at an off-campus apartment.
Taylor is Pratt’s cousin. Pratt pleaded guilty to second-degree murder in Reed’s death, receiving an 18- to 30-year sentence. A jury acquitted Thomas of murder and other charges.
Taylor reportedly suffered a broken facial bone and stitches in the attack. He told The Ann Arbor News that he was walking home from a store with a friend when the trio approached him. Taylor said he told the men he had nothing to do with Reed’s murder but “they want revenge or something,” and that’s when punches started flying.
“They think I have something to do with it, and I do not,” Taylor said.
Eastern Michigan Assistant Athletic Director Greg Steiner said the players will remain on the team during disciplinary proceedings, but aren’t allowed to participate in any team activities or be on campus.
During trial, Pratt testified that it was an alcohol-fueled night of partying that led up to the shooting of Reed. Pratt told the court that he and Thomas followed Reed into the University Green apartments, where Reed lived, with the intention of robbing the 20-year-old wide receiver from Chicago.
Washtenaw County Assistant Prosecutor Nimish Ganatra told jurors that Thomas punched and robbed Reed before Pratt shot Reed multiple times in the head.
Ypsilanti’s Interim Police Chief Tony DeGiusti said several students at the party reported hearing gunshots, but none of them called police. He also said at least one person walked past Reed as he lay on the stairwell, but didn’t call the police “because they just thought he was someone passed-out from the party.”
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