Suspect in shooting death of ex-NFL player Joe McKnight released without charges

0:48 | NFL
Former USC and NFL running back Joe McKnight murdered
Thursday December 1st, 2016

Former NFL running back Joe McKnight was shot and killed Thursday afternoon in Terrytown, Louisiana.

He was 28. 

The suspect, 54-year-old Ronald Gasser, was arrested at the scene, but was released from custody without being formally charged, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office said.

McKnight, who most recently played for the Canadian Football League’s Saskatchewan Roughriders, was reportedly in a conflict at a highway intersection and attempting to apologize to another man, who then shot him more than once, according to an unnamed witness.

The sheriff gave a press conference Friday, offering a scene that contradicted that witness account. The witness told the Times-Picayune that the shooter shot McKnight, then stood over him and said “I told you don't you f--- with me” before firing again. According to authorities, Gasser fired on McKnight three times from his vehicle, and there was no account of McKnight apologizing for something.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand said that McKnight did not have a gun, and authorities did not find a gun outside McKnight's vehicle.

A native of the New Orleans area, McKnight starred for John Curtis Christian High School and was considered by some services as the top running back prospect in his class.

McKnight went on to play college football at USC, and professionally for the New York Jets, who drafted him in the fourth round in 2010, and Kansas City Chiefs. A torn Achilles tendon in 2014 effectively ended his NFL career.

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