GRETNA, La. (AP) — The man convicted of manslaughter in the 2016 road-rage shooting death of former NFL running back Joe McKnight faces sentencing in a suburban New Orleans courtroom on Thursday.
Ronald Gasser, 56, could get up to 40 years in prison.
Gasser was convicted Jan. 26.
Defense lawyers argued that Gasser fired in self-defense when McKnight walked up to his car following a 5-mile rolling confrontation that began on a bridge spanning the Mississippi River in New Orleans and ended with gunfire in neighboring Jefferson Parish.
Witnesses at the trial said McKnight had been weaving in and out of traffic at high speed before the shooting. Prosecutors acknowledged to the jury that he was, in the words of Assistant District Attorney Seth Shute, “driving like a jerk.” But they argued that Gasser escalated the conflict, following him down an exit that he would not ordinarily have taken moments prior to the shooting.
Shute acknowledged that McKnight had a hand on the open, passenger side window of Gasser’s car before he was shot. But he said physical evidence proved Gasser lied during extensive police questioning when he claimed McKnight lunged at him.
McKnight had been a high school football hero at Louisiana’s John Curtis Christian School. He signed with the University of Southern California in 2006. In the NFL, he played three seasons for the New York Jets and one with the Kansas City Chiefs.
Gasser was indicted on a second-degree murder charge in McKnight’s death. The jury voted 10-2 for the lesser verdict of manslaughter.
Gasser did not leave the scene of the shooting and he was released for a time after being questioned. He is white and his release after the shooting of the black athlete sparked protests at the time from some who said race was a factor.
Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand, who has since retired, denied that race played any role and noted that a thorough investigation led to Gasser’s arrest and indictment. Prosecutors later recounted a painstaking investigation including an extensive search for witnesses and physical evidence that eventually led to Gasser being charged.
The case in some ways echoed another New Orleans-area road-rage shooting from 2016. Former New Orleans Saints star Will Smith was gunned down in that April incident. The shooter was later convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to 25 years.
Tiger Woods completes a Masterpiece of a comeback
The roars and the magic returned to golf Sunday at the Masters as Tiger Woods, among all the things he has accomplished across a storied career, managed to pull off one of the greatest comebacks in sports history.
Taking a two-shot lead with a birdie on the 16th hole at Augusta National, Woods was the focused killer he used to be before all the injuries and personal problems and doubts about whether he could play at a high level again. Sunday afternoon, his fifth green jacket, his first in 14 years and first major victory in nearly 11 years became a joyous inevitability at Augusta as Woods became the oldest Masters winner since Jack Nicklaus in 1986.
When it was over, his final putt tucked into the cup at 18, Woods broke into a huge grin and raised his arms high. He fell into a long embrace with his caddie, Joe La Cava, and then made a beeline to his son, Charlie, grabbing him in the kind of tight hug that he used to share with his father when he won all those championships. He hugged his mother and his daughter, Sam, who was an infant the last time he won. Then he made his way to Butler Cabin, greeted along the way by other golfers (some Masters champions, some now) as the roar gave way to “Tiger!” chants.
Inject this whole freaking moment directly into my veins for the rest of eternity pic.twitter.com/5Q1NPsRDIK
— Isaac (@WorldofIsaac) April 14, 2019
Read More Here
LEBRON JAMES SCHOOL CRUSHING EXPECTATIONS … Huge Gains In Test Scores
LeBron James says he’s INCREDIBLY PROUD of stats showing the students at his “I Promise” school in Akron are making tremendous gains in statewide testing … just 1 year after it opened.
There are only 240 students in the inaugural 3rd and 4th grade classes at the Akron school — but numbers obtained by the NY Times show test scores in math and reading were up BIG after the first year.
In reading, the 3rd and 4th graders had initially scored in the lowest percentile — the 1%.
But, after a year, when the students took the district-wide exams, the 3rd graders JUMPED to the 9th percentile and the 4th graders moved to the 16th!
Take a second and reflect on that — those are HUGE gains.
And that’s not all … when it came to math, the 3rd graders jumped from the 1% to the 18th percentile — and 4th graders moved from the 2% to the 30th!!!!
When asked about the incredible improvements, LeBron told the Times, “These kids are doing an unbelievable job, better than we all expected.”
He added, “When we first started, people knew I was opening a school for kids. Now people are going to really understand the lack of education they had before they came to our school.”
“People are going to finally understand what goes on behind our doors.”
So, what does go on behind their doors?
Besides access to teachers and materials, the school also provides clothing and snacks to families that need it … which is partially funded by LeBron’s foundation.
Keep up the good work!!!
Cowboys Legend Michael Irvin Undergoes Throat Biopsy, Asks For Prayers
Dallas Cowboys Hall of Famer Michael Irvin posted on Instagram Tuesday that he spent Sunday and Monday at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center undergoing tests, including a throat biopsy, after having issues with his voice the past two months.
He said he’s visiting the best doctors in the nation.
Irvin said he lost his father to throat cancer at age 51 and he is terrified and asks for prayers in dealing with whatever the results may be.
View this post on Instagram
Spent Sun & Mon in LA at UCLA medical Health (Ronald Reagan Hospital) doing health test. I would not usually do this but this I need to share. Growing up in the ghetto of Ft Lauderdale the one thing you have to conquer to get out is FEAR. I did! As a football player the no fear gift served me well as a blessing and an asset on the field but sometimes off the field it’s been a curse and a liability. This past football season after the @dallascowboys beat the @Saints i was so elated and hyped I lost my voice and the problem persisted for almost 2months. After visiting some of the best throat Doctors they thought it to be wise to take a deeper look at the situation. So we schedule and performed a throat biopsy. To give background I share with you that I lost my father at the young age of 51. He had throat cancer. This daemon has chased and vexed me deep in my spirit all my life. So saying I am afraid this time is a big big understatement. I AM TERRIFIED!! My Faith tells me whenever you face great fear you go to your greatness power. Mine is God. I am asking all who will. Could you please send up a prayer to help my family and I deal with whatever the results may be? Thanks for your thoughts and prayers in advance🙏🏾🙏🏾I will continue to pray for your fams protection and prosperity as well. May God Bless us all 🙏🏾🙏🏾