Archive for Friday, October 8, 2010

Former KU football players Vernon Brooks, Jamal Greene to stand trial for burglary, assault

October 8, 2010


A Douglas County judge Thursday ordered two former Kansas University football players to stand trial in connection with a May incident in which four KU students were briefly held at gunpoint in a Lawrence apartment.

The four students Thursday testified two men wearing black ski masks and armed with what appeared to be handguns entered the apartment at 1:30 a.m. May 14 and forced them to the ground at Tuckaway Apartments, 2600 W. Sixth St.

“The larger guy kept pushing the gun to the back of my head and kept cocking it like four times,” said Ryan Kearns, a KU student at the time in the apartment that night.

During a Thursday preliminary hearing of defendants Vernon Brooks, 23, and Jamal Greene, 22, Kearns and three other witnesses testified they were in the living room that night after studying for finals.

They said two men opened the unlocked door and entered. It seemed the two suspects, who wore black ski masks and dark clothing, were surprised to see people inside, but then they brandished handguns and ordered the four students to get on the ground.

Kearns said the larger of two suspects ordered them to the ground and eventually pointed a handgun at his head. Kearns said the other suspect walked toward a back bedroom of the apartment and then reappeared a few seconds later and said “he’s not here” before the two suspects left the apartment.

“Honestly I thought that someone was going to get shot. Someone was going to get hurt because I didn’t think they wanted any witnesses,” said Catherine Martin, another KU student who said she was ordered to the ground.

One hour later, KU police stopped a vehicle matching a description from the scene and arrested Brooks, a former KU linebacker who had been dismissed from the team earlier in the spring. Later that morning, officers arrested Greene — a defensive tackle who was eventually kicked off the team that afternoon — at his residence off campus.

Lawrence police Detective Lance Flachsbarth testified both Brooks and Greene in an interview said Brooks had recruited Greene in a plan to enter the apartment believing they could take marijuana and money from a back bedroom.

In the interview Brooks said he went to a locked bedroom. Someone briefly opened the door but then shut it again so he and Greene left the apartment.

Greene told detectives he carried a semiautomatic handgun that he owned and claimed it was not loaded. Flachsbarth said police recovered a gun.

After hearing the testimony Thursday, Douglas County District Judge Paula Martin bound Greene and Brooks over for trial on one count each of aggravated burglary, four counts of aggravated assault and one count of conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary.

The trial for Greene, who is now listed on Mid-America Nazarene University’s football roster, is scheduled for Jan. 17, and Brooks faces a jury trial Feb. 21. Both defendants remain free on bond.


KEITHMILES05 3 years, 6 months ago

Greene is playing ball for Mid America Nazarene? My goodness, what a travesty.


jalbig 3 years, 6 months ago

But who is it they were looking for? LJW's report indicates cash and pot were the items of interest, but what did they actually find what they were looking for? Did they take something else instead, besides the dignity and sense of security of those present in the apartment? What's the deal with leaving the door unlocked anyway? At least make the potential intruders put forth a little effort to get in. Know your roomies and take better precautions... Too many apartment parties with too many unknown 3rd party visitors/strangers dramatacically increases your chances of inviting undesired experiences...


KU_Dude 3 years, 6 months ago

I'm just glad that Detective Lance Flachsbarth didn't go easy on them since he is a former KU Football player himself.


CorkyHundley 3 years, 6 months ago

Those college kids are always up to something. Solid people from a solid institution. Your dollars at work.


autie 3 years, 6 months ago

buckin for a Darwin. It is a terrible thing that Universities recruit total dumbasses that many times have to be unrecruited in a radical manner, only to be loosed upon the community.


jfcm77 3 years, 6 months ago

Now, now. Obviously Mr. Greene has found Jesus and become a Nazarene.


grammaddy 3 years, 6 months ago

Puhleez, seems like too many of them get too many breaks as it is.I can remember members of the football team stealing leather coats from Weavers', shoes from 1/2 price Store and getting stuck in the drive-thru window at Taco Bell.Put them on a leash.


geoismeo 3 years, 6 months ago

Gee, they were football players. Lets give them a break.


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