Police leave home after search for Auburn suspect

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Those killed in the weekend shooting include former Auburn football players Edward Christian, who had to quit the team because of a lingering back injury, and Ladarious Phillips, who was transferring from Auburn to Jacksonville State University to play football. The other person killed was Demario Pitts, 20.

Of the three people who were wounded, current Auburn football player Eric Mack and Xavier Moss were both treated and released from a hospital. The third, John Robertson, remained in critical condition after being shot in the head.

A witness who identified himself as a friend of Mr. Pitts’ said he didn’t know the man who pulled out a gun and began firing into the crowd following a dispute over a woman.

“I ain’t never seen him a day of my life,” said Turquorius Vines, 23, who wasn’t injured in the melee.

Police have arrested Mr. Leonard on two previous charges involving guns.

Court records show Montgomery police arrested Mr. Leonard in 2008 on a charge of carrying a pistol without a license after stopping a suspected stolen vehicle and finding him inside. Documents available online didn’t show whether the case was ever resolved, but Mr. Leonard was freed on bond within days.

Mr. Leonard was charged in 2009 with assault after a man was shot in the groin, but prosecutors dropped the case after the victim told authorities Mr. Leonard wasn’t the shooter.

A Montgomery woman filed a paternity suit against Mr. Leonard on Friday that identified him as the father of a girl who turned 1 last month.

Another woman sued him in 2009 seeking unpaid child support for a girl who is now 4. A court ordered monthly payments of $305 by Mr. Leonard, who records show was working at a Wal-Mart store at the time.

Auburn police said the shootings did not appear to have anything to do with some of the victims being former or current players on the football team, which won the national championship in 2010. The swimming pool at the apartment complex frequently is the site of parties.

Associated Press writers Phil Rawls in Montgomery and Jay Reeves in Birmingham, Ala., contributed to this report.

 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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