UO football players suspended after airsoft gun shooting

Jamal Hill (Left) and Desmond James

A man was hit in the face in the airsoft gun shooting.

Posted: Aug 6, 2021 12:59 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- Two University of Oregon football players have been suspended indefinitely from the team after allegedly shooting at several people with an airsoft gun this week.

Jamal Hill, 20, of Eugene and Desmond James, 20, of Mobile, Alabama were charged with three counts each of reckless endangering, assault, unlawful discharge of a firearm and disorderly conduct in connection with the events of Aug. 3. 

Police said they first responded to 14th Avenue and Willamette Street just before midnight that day after learning a man had been shot in the face with a realistic-looking airsoft gun. Three people in total reported similar incidents in the area.

The shots reportedly came from a sedan driving past, and one victim told officers he was riding an electric scooter and was almost hit by the vehicle as it left the area.

After a search, officers spotted the suspected vehicle near 11th Avenue and Willamette Street, and officers talked with the suspects, who they say cooperated.

“We have high standards and expectations for the student-athletes in our program,” Oregon head coach Mario Cristobal said in a statement. “We were made aware of the situation and are in process of gathering all of the related information, after which we will take appropriate action.”

Hill started in six games at safety for Oregon last season. He helped the Ducks to a Pac-12 championship recording two interceptions while making a career-high five tackles in the win over USC. 

James appeared in seven games at cornerback for the Ducks in 2020. He tallied 14 total tackles and a career-high four tackles in the Pac-12 Championship game. 

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