Police Hone in on Football Star's Killer

STORRS, Conn.

Police are expecting to arrest one suspect today in the death of Jasper Howard, a University of Connecticut football player who was mortally stabbed during an Oct. 18 fight on campus. The 20-year-old football star helped his team win a game just 12 hours before the incident occurred.

According to police, some witnesses of the killing have been threatened online. Police are still urging witnesses to come forward with information or possible cell phone video footage while they investigate the internet postings.

Police searched an unidentified Bloomfield, Conn., man’s home and removed several items. Police told the man’s attorney, Deron Freeman, that his client will be arrested along with other suspects. Freeman says his client did not stab Howard, but was present when Howard was fatally wounded, reported Fox News. According to the suspect’s lawyer, the fight involved about six UConn football players.

Authorities have also arrested 21-year-old Johnny Hood and charged him with interfering with an officer and breach of peace after giving police a false name. Hood has not been charged with the death of Howard. However, he was identified as a witness and an involved party in the fight that lead to Howard’s death.

Howard died of a single stab wound to the abdomen during a fight involving both UConn students and non-students following an on-campus, university-sanctioned dance, according to news reports. The fight broke out shortly after 300 people were forced to evacuate the party after a fire alarm went off in the student center, says Fox News.

A second UConn football player was also injured in the fight. Brian Parker, 19, was stabbed but sustained minor injuries.

According to UConn police Major Ronald Blicher, Howard’s death is the university’s first homicide in the more than 30 years.

Vice President for Student Affairs John Saddlemire said the university has no immediate plans to upgrade security, according to Republican-American.

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