Fresno State F Jones, G Brunner charged with assault, theft
Posted: Wed March 18, 1998 at 6:06 a.m EST
Fresno State forward Avondre Jones and Kenny Brunner, a guard
who transferred from Georgetown late in the season, were
arrested Tuesday morning and expected to be charged with assault
and grand theft today in Fresno, California.
According to the police report, which will be presented to the
Fresno County District Attorney's office this morning,
Jones, Brunner and the victim, 22-year-old Colin DeForrest, were
drinking in Jones' off-campus apartment following Monday's 83-80
victory over Memphis.
An argument ensued, and Jones allegedly brandished a handgun and
activated the chamber as if to put a round in it. According to
DeForrest, Jones began to wave the gun around in a threatening
manner and put it in his face.
When Jones was told the gun was loaded, he became concerned and
put the gun down, only to take out samurai swords. He and
Brunner then allegedly slapped DeForrest with the flat side of
the swords on his torso and legs, and also scratched him with
the front and back of the sword, leaving welts, abrasions,
scratches and lacerations on DeForrest's legs and torso.
At this point, DeForrest attempted to leave the apartment with
his backpack. But Jones and Brunner removed a camera and money
from the backpack. DeForrest returned to his apartment, and
with his roomate, returned to Jones' apartment to try and
recover his camera and money. When the two refused, DeForrest
notified the authorities.
"A warrantless arrest was made because elements created probable
cause a crime was committed," said Lieutenant Jerry Davis of the
Fresno Police Department. "Both were booked into the Fresno
County Jail and we have until 11 a.m. (today) to present the
case to the district attorney's office, where it will be
Bulldogs coach Jerry Tarkanian released a statement through the
"I learned this morning that two members of our basketball
program, Avondre Jones and Kenny Brunner, were arrested late
last night for suspected felonies. Needless to say, I was
devastated to hear this. I couldn't even enjoy one night after
a big victory."
Jones, who played 24 minutes and scored six points in Monday
night's 83-80 victory over Memphis, was dismissed from the team
by Tarkanian. He averaged 9.5 points and 6.8 rebounds in 24
"Avondre was playing under strict conditions, required by a Code
of Conduct panel," Tarkanian added. "Therefore, I have
dismissed Avondre from the team immediately. I have suspended
Kenny indefinitely from the basketball program pending an
investigation of the facts by the athletic director and the
Brunner, a native of Compton, California, averaged 11.2 points
and 7.3 assists in 19 games for Georgetown before leaving the
team, citing homesickness. Brunner would not have been eligible
for the 1998-99 season as per NCAA rules regarding transfers.
The alleged incident comes two days after the CBS news magazine
show "60 Minutes" did a piece on the Bulldogs' basketball
program and Tarkanian, pointing out the number of players who
have been disciplined and given second chances either arriving
to play at Fresno State or during this season.
"This has been a difficult season," said Tarkanian, who recorded
his 14th consecutive 20-win season despite handing out a variety
of suspensions this season for violations of team rules. "There
is no excuse for behavior like this, and I will not tolerate a
few individuals continuing to give black eyes to our program and
our university. I won't rest until all members of our
basketball program exhibit behavior everyone can be proud of."
Jones is one of five Fresno State players who has missed time
this season due to suspension or other problems. Point guard
Rafer Alston missed the first game of the season after being
suspended for an assault charge. Daymond Forney, who was
suspended three different times due to violating team rules,
quit the team February 25th.
Starting forward Tremaine Fowlkes was suspended two games for
violating team rules, and starting shooting guard Chris Herren
missed five games, taking a personal leave to battle a
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