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83-Steelers-43 09-17-2006 11:08 AM

Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
Sunday, September 17, 2006

By Matt Smith, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Five Duquesne University students, all members of the men's basketball team, were shot after a dance on campus early this morning.

Two of the wounded students were in critical condition, according to police investigators.

The university confirmed that all five men are on the basketball team, but did not identify any of the victims.

"First and foremost, we are concerned about our students and are praying that each of them has a full recovery. We will offer support and services to the victims and their families, as well as to our other students who may have been affected by this tragic incident. This type of situation has never occurred before on Duquesne's campus. The university is cooperating fully with the ongoing investigation," said Bridget Fare, university spokeswoman.

City police said they were looking for a shooting suspect, described as a black male, about 5 feet, 4 inches tall and wearing a white T-shirt.

City homicide detectives said the shooting occurred about 2:15 a.m. this morning on the campus near Vickroy Hall. The students had been at a dance earlier in the evening at the student union and got in an argument with the shooting suspect.

A short time later, as the group of students was walking on a walkway through campus, they were confronted by the suspect, who came around the side of Vickroy Hall and began shooting, said police Cmdr. Thomas Stangrecki.

A 23-year-old male who was shot in the head and a 21-year-old male who was shot in the shoulder and forearm were both in critical condition at Mercy Hospital.

The other three shooting victims were a 23-year-old male who was shot in the foot, a 20-year-old male shot in the wrist and another male who was shot in the shoulder and forearm. All three were treated and released at undisclosed hospitals.

The shooting suspect was last seen running toward Forbes Avenue. Duquesne University officials said they do not believe the shooting suspect was a student at the university.

Anyone with information is asked to call the city homicide office at 412-323-7161.

Mosca 09-18-2006 03:57 PM

Duquesne basketball; any more news?
I was shocked to read about the shootings yesterday. And I was also surprised to read about the huge recruiting push to bring the school back to its former glory days under Red Manning (whose basketball camp I attended in 1968...).

Any suspects? How are the guys who were "critical" doing?


83-Steelers-43 09-18-2006 03:59 PM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
They are now saying that it has something to do with a girlfriend......

83-Steelers-43 09-18-2006 04:01 PM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
Threads merged.

83-Steelers-43 09-19-2006 08:51 AM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
Man arrested in Duquesne University shooting
Tuesday, September 19, 2006

By Jim McKinnon, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Police have arrested a man in connection with the shooting of five Duquesne basketball players early Sunday at a campus party.

The alleged gunman was arrested overnight. His name has not yet been released. The man will be arraigned this morning on charges related to the shooting.

Two other men are in custody, but are thought to be witnesses to the shooting.

Brittany Jones, 19, of Penn Hills, who is said to be an associate of the suspect, was arrested last night. She was charged with reckless endangerment, carrying a firearm without a license and criminal conspiracy, according to her attorney, James M. Ecker. She was arraigned at 6:30 a.m. and is to be released from Allegheny County Jail within the hour, said Mr. Ecker. Ms. Jones is a sophomore at Duquesne University and a member of the Black Student Union, sponsor of the party.

According to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case, Ms. Jones got a call from a friend named Kenny Eason the night of the dance. He asked if he could come to the party. Mr. Eason arrived on campus with several friends and his brother, Jeremiah Eason. As the group was walking toward the Duquesne Union where the party was being held, Kenny Eason asked Ms. Jones if they would be frisked at the door. She went ahead of the group and asked the doorman whether those attending were being checked for weapons, and was told they would not be. Ms. Jones noticed that Mr. Eason and several of his friends were carrying guns, according to the affidavit. One of them, identified only as "Little Bill," is named as the person with whom she conspired to smuggle weapons into the party.

After the party ended at 2 a.m., Ms. Jones was walking toward the Towers dormitory and heard arguing. She ran toward the sound of voices and saw one of the men in the group that had accompanied her to the party shooting toward several men. Ms. Jones did not identify the shooter. Afterward, she saw several men lying on the ground bleeding.

The affidavit does not contain information about what happened at the party that might have sparked the confrontation.

83-Steelers-43 09-20-2006 04:08 PM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
Alleged second gunman in Duquesne shootings in custody
Wednesday, September 20, 2006

By Michael Fuoco, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

The suspected second gunman in the shooting of five Duquesne University basketball players is in police custody.

William Holmes, 18, of Penn Hills surrendered at his lawyer's office this afternoon.

Police Cmdr. Thomas Stangrecki said Mr. Holmes will be charged with five counts of criminal attempt homicide, five counts of aggravated assault, a firearms violation and conspiracy.

The shooting that occurred on-campus early Sunday left basketball player Sam Ashaolu, 23, in critical condition and teammates Stuard Baldonado, 21, Kojo Mensah, 21, Aaron Jackson, 20, and Shawn James, 23, wounded.

Police charged 19-year-old Brittany Jones of Penn Hills with reckless endangerment, carrying a firearm without a license and conspiracy for helping Brandon Baynes, 19, and Mr. Holmes smuggle the guns into the Duquesne Union that later were used in the shootings. Mr. Baynes was arrested overnight Monday.

Polamalus_Angel 09-22-2006 03:45 PM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
As of today one of the guys still in critical condition still has two bullets lodged in his brain. This is soo awful. I believe the one still in critical condition is supposed to be a cousin of Hakeem Olajuwon as reported on ESPN.

83-Steelers-43 09-22-2006 04:14 PM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical

Originally Posted by Polamalus_Angel (Post 153854)
As of today one of the guys still in critical condition still has two bullets lodged in his brain. This is soo awful. I believe the one still in critical condition is supposed to be a cousin of Hakeem Olajuwon as reported on ESPN.

He was upgraded today from critical to serious.

83-Steelers-43 01-20-2007 09:45 AM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
This team can't catch a break.............

Dukes' Thiero hospitalized, likely out for season
Saturday, January 20, 2007

By Phil Axelrod, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Bad luck continues to haunt Almamy Thiero, whose basketball career at Duquesne most likely has ended because blood clots were discovered in his lung for the second time. He admitted himself to Mercy Hospital yesterday and is expected to remain there indefinitely.

Thiero, a 6-foot-9 graduate student who spent four injury-interrupted years at Memphis, missed the majority of the 2003-04 season with blood clots in his lungs.

"Our concern right now is with Al and his family," Duquesne coach Ron Everhart said in a statement. "Fortunately he got himself to the hospital in time for the proper tests to be run and he's resting comfortably. I feel for Al because he is such a quality person who has fought through so much adversity in his career."

Thiero, who transferred to Duquesne after earning an undergraduate degree at Memphis, averaged 2.4 points and 3.3 rebounds in 11.5 minutes per game in a reserve role with the Dukes. It took Thiero a while to round into playing shape after he had arthroscopic surgery on his knee Oct. 9, a week before official practice started.

As a freshman at Memphis, he played in just two games after having surgery to have a metal rod placed in his lower leg to repair a stress fracture to his tibia.

As a sophomore, he appeared in just three games after blood clots were found in his lungs in mid-December.

As a junior, he played in 23 games and averaged 0.5 points and 1.5 rebounds.

As a senior, he missed the entire season while recovering from an ACL injury that occurred during that summer.

83-Steelers-43 03-06-2007 03:14 PM

Re: Five Duquesne basketball players shot on campus; two critical
Excellent stuff......

Duquesne's Ashaolu cleared to practice, likely to play again
Tuesday, March 06, 2007

By Alan Robinson, The Associated Press

If the slumping Duquesne Dukes need a motivational lift going into the Atlantic 10 tournament, perhaps Sam Ashaolu will provide it.

Ashaolu's basketball future, and his life, were very much in doubt only a few months ago, but he is expected to rejoin the Dukes on the court in a few weeks.

Ashaolu, who nearly died Sept. 17 after being one of five Dukes players shot following an on-campus party, has been cleared to resume on-court activity despite still having the fragments of two bullets in his head.

Once the Dukes' informal offseason workouts begin, the 6-foot-7 Ashaolu is planning to scrimmage and take part in drills.

He also expects to resume taking classes this summer, another milestone that wasn't expected nearly so soon, if it all. He needs an NCAA medical waiver to work out with the Dukes until he is re-enrolled, but that is not expected to be a problem considering the circumstances.

The former North Dakota junior college player will needs time to regain his on-court reflexes, quickness and mobility, but it now seems likely he can practice next season. If he receives NCAA clearance for an additional season or seasons of eligibility beyond the normal limit, he could play again in the 2008-09 season.

"Just watching him is the biggest win a coach could have ever have, knowing where he was medically and the improvement he's made in five short months," Duquesne coach Ron Everhart said. "It's really amazing and truly is a miracle."

That the 24-year-old Ashaolu lived was considered remarkable by his doctors -- some did not expect him to make it through the first 24 hours after being shot in the back of the head. As he clung precariously to life for several days, family members were warned he might need supervised around-the-clock care the rest of his life.

Instead, Ashaolu not only got better very quickly, he has surprised his doctors by improving every month.

At a Nov. 13 news conference, Mercy Hospital neurosurgeon Daniel Bursick cautioned that while Ashaolu's recovery was encouraging, there were "no promises, no guarantees" for the future. Other doctors warned his progress might soon level off.

Last week, however, Bursick told older brother John Ashaolu that Sam could start doing whatever he wanted to do.

"I asked the doctor, 'Do you mean, like physical contact?' and he said, 'Yeah,'" said John Ashaolu, a Duquesne graduate assistant. "He was almost nonchalant about it. Sam is healing pretty well, and he's still in the process of healing, but if he feels he's up to it, he can go ahead and do it."

There was additional encouraging medical news last week, too -- the swelling around the bullet fragments has gone down considerably.

"I feel very optimistic that he's definitely going to play again," John Ashaolu said. "He's almost back to normal. He's regaining his form. I see him working out and I'm very encouraged by what I see."

So is Everhart, who has never seen signs of the anticipated slowdown in Ashaolu's recovery.

"When I hear people talk about Sam not playing basketball because of the injury, I just look at him and think that nobody is going to deny him that," Everhart said. "I just see the determination and his work ethic. ... I expect him to come back and play some day."

Every week, it seems his teammates have another Sam story to tell. Last week, they were surprised when he bettered Shawn James and Kojo Mensah, two transfers who are currently ineligible, in an informal shooting contest before practice.

"I don't know that I've ever been around anyone who is as inspiring or as motivating in terms of the obstacles this young man has overcome -- the courage and the determination he's shown," Everhart said.

Sam Ashaolu wonders what all the fuss is about, since he has never doubted he would play again. He hasn't been in pain for months and is gradually regaining his strength.

"I've just been waiting to get back on the court," he said. "The hardest part has been the sitting, having to watch every day, not being out there."

The U.S. Basketball Writers Association will present the Dukes with its Most Courageous Award at the Final Four in Atlanta on April 2. The award reflects not only the strong recoveries made by Ashaolu and Stuard Baldonado, the other player seriously injured in the shootings, but the how the Dukes put together a string of five consecutive upset victories earlier this season.

The Dukes (10-18) take a seven-game losing streak into Wednesday night's Atlantic 10 tournament game against Saint Louis (18-12) in Atlantic City, N.J., but at least they're playing. Last season, they didn't make the tournament field after going 3-24 under former coach Danny Nee.

That's why, to Everhart, there may never have been a more inspiring 10-win team. He said Sam Ashaolu's comeback is partly responsible for the Dukes' strong mind-set and determination.

"To be around Sam every day, he's been motivating and inspirational to me and something that has impacted my life," Everhart said. "Anyone who has seen what Sam has had to endure would be a changed man, and he's certainly done that for me."

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