Ex-Auburn footballers killed in shootings

AUBURN, Ala., June 10 (UPI) -- Two former Auburn University football players were among three people killed in a shooting near the Alabama campus, law enforcement officials said Sunday.

Auburn Police Chief Tommy Dawson told a news conference Sunday afternoon a manhunt had been launched in Montgomery for the suspect, Desmonte Leonard, 22, who was considered armed and dangerous.


Dawson said former Auburn football players Ed Christian and Ladarious Phillips, both 20, were killed by a gunman, while current offensive lineman Eric Mack was wounded. Mack's wounds were said to be non-life-threatening.

Christian was off the team due to an injury.

The third victim was identified as DeMario Pitts, 20, an Auburn resident, WTVM-TV, Columbus, Ga., reported.

"It is sickening that these young lives were cut short, and the shooter is such a young man," said Dawson.

The Mobile Press-Register reported two others were seriously wounded in the shooting during a Saturday night party at an off-campus Auburn apartment complex.

The two critically wounded victims now at East Alabama Medical Center are not associated with the Auburn football program, the Press-Register said.

Multiple gunshots were reported late Saturday at the University Heights apartment complex, WTVM-TV, said.

Witnesses told The Auburn Plainsman the altercation possibly arose over a dispute about a woman.

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