Two former basketball players from Duquesne University have filed suit against the school over a 2006 shooting that left them and three other teammates with personal injuries.
Kojo Mensah and Shawn James allege that the university was negligent in their failure to provide adequate security at a dance on campus after which they and three teammates were shot, according to federal lawsuits filed on June 23.
Separate, but nearly identical suits were filed in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania by the two players. They claim that the shooting in September 2006 could have been prevented if the university had kept non-students out and provided better security. The two seek unspecified damages.
Mensah, who was shot in the shoulder and arm, and James, who was shot in the foot, also allege that they were forced to practice, work out, and play by Coach Ron Everhart before they had recovered from the injuries they sustained. James specifically alleges that he was forced by Everhart to remove a therapeutic boot from his injured foot during practice.
The lawsuits allege negligence on the part of the university because a then-student of Duquesne had asked a security guard if her friends would be frisked upon entry to the dance. The suit claims that the guard failed to alert authorities and allowed the men to enter.
After the dance, one of the men became upset over a woman who came with them flirting with the players. After an argument took place, the athletes turned to walk away but two gunmen opened fire.
The other players injured in the shooting were Sam Ashaolu, Aaron Jackson, and Stuard Baldonado.
Gunman William Holmes II pled guilty in October and received a sentence of up to 40 years in prison. The other shooter, Derek Lee, received a 14-year sentence.