The Latest: Sheriff: 'verbal exchange' preceded shooting

BY foxsports • December 2, 2016

The Latest on the fatal shooting of former NFL player Joe McKnight (all times local):

1:45 p.m.

A suburban New Orleans sheriff says a man fired three rounds from inside his vehicle in the fatal shooting of former NFL player Joe McKnight, adding McKnight was standing outside the other man's vehicle.

A sheriff's statement added that preliminary accounts from witnesses and the shooter ''suggested these events represented the culmination of a road rage incident.''

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand released the statement ahead of a Friday afternoon news conference in which he said Ronald Gasser fired three rounds through an open window. He added that all three rounds struck McKnight.

The statement said Gasser handed a semi-automatic handgun over to officers who arrived at the scene of Thursday's shooting.

Normand's statement also said witnesses observed a ''heated verbal exchange'' between Gasser and McKnight before the shooting.

The sheriff didn't immediately announce any charges and cautioned repeatedly against a rush to judgment.

The sheriff's office announced previously that Gasser was released from custody overnight.

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12:30 p.m.

A grandmother of Joe McKnight says family members are still seeking information on the former NFL player's death and why the man a sheriff identified as the shooter was released from custody.

Barbara Franklin told The Associated Press by telephone Friday that relatives are ''trying to find out our own selves'' more about what happened.

She says family members haven't had any communication with the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office about Ronald Gasser's release, saying she learned of it through a radio broadcast Friday.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand on Thursday said Gasser was the man who shot McKnight. The shooting happened about 3 p.m. Thursday in the New Orleans suburb of Terrytown.

''He might be released now, but God is going to bring about justice in it,'' Franklin said of Gasser's release.

Jennifer McKnight, the athlete's mother, declined through tears to speak to a reporter.

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9:45 a.m.

Authorities say the man they identified as having fatally shot former NFL player Joe McKnight was released from custody overnight.

Col. John Fortunato is a spokesman for the Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office. He tells news media outlets Ronald Gasser hasn't been charged at this time and the shooting is still under investigation.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand on Thursday said Gasser was the person who shot McKnight.

The shooting happened about 3 p.m. Thursday in Terrytown, a suburb of New Orleans just across the Mississippi River.

McKnight is the second former NFL player this year to die in the New Orleans area as a result of a possible road-rage incident. Former New Orleans Saints player Will Smith was killed in April in a shooting that was sparked by a traffic altercation.

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3:30 a.m.

Former NFL player Joe McKnight has been shot to death following an argument at an intersection with another motorist outside New Orleans.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand says it happened about 2:43 p.m. Thursday in Terrytown, a suburb of New Orleans.

Normand says 28-year-old McKnight was standing outside his car when he was shot by 54-year-old Ronald Gasser.

Normand says Gasser stayed at the scene and relinquished his weapon to responding officers. He says Gasser is in custody and being questioned.

Sheriff's spokesman Col. John Fortunato says they're anticipating charging Gasser but it's unclear with what.

McKnight, who played for the New York Jets and Kansas City Chiefs, is the second NFL player this year to die as a result of a possible road-rage incident. Saints player Will Smith was killed in April.



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