Morris twins charged with felony aggravated assault

Marcus Morris (#15, left) of the Phoenix Suns chats with teammate and identical twin Markieff Morris (#11, right) as the Suns host the Portland Trail Blazers on November 27, 2013.
Barry Gossage/NBAE via Getty Images

By Steve DelVecchio

The Morris twins have been charged with felony aggravated assault stemming from a January 24 incident at a recreation center in Phoenix, Arizona.

ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reports that Marcus and Markieff were formally charged on Tuesday. The Phoenix Suns forwards have been accused of assaulting a 36-year-old man after they left a basketball game with three other men.

The alleged victim, Erik Hood, claims he saw the Morris brothers enter the gym with three other men, former USC safety Gerald Bowman, Julius Kane and Christopher Melendez. Hood told police he was a mentor to Markieff and Marcus when they were in high school and helped their family financially.

The attack is said to have occurred after Hood sent a text message to the twins’ mother, Thomasine Morris, letting her know he would “always be there” for her. Hood says someone who saw the message drew the conclusion that he and Thomasine were having sexual relations with one another, which angered the Morris brothers.

Phoenix police say several witnesses were interviewed before the Morris brothers were charged.

“Because the offense occurred at a basketball tournament with over 100 in attendance, including many youth under the age of 18, the Phoenix Police detective assigned to this investigation was tasked with tracking down and interviewing all who may have been witness to the assault, including out-of-state attendees,” the department said in a statement. “After weeks of interviews and information-gathering, the detective was able to present a cognitive investigation to the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office for review.”

The Suns signed Markieff to a $32 million extension last summer and Marcus to a $20 million extension at the same time. Both brothers have displayed their fair share of aggressive behavior on the court. Earlier this season, Marcus was seen exploding on Suns coach Jeff Hornacek during a team huddle. Last month, Markieff was ejected for this hard foul on Goran Dragic.


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