AUBURN, Ala. (AP) — Auburn freshman football player Jakell Lenard Mitchell was shot and killed Sunday morning at an apartment complex near the Auburn University campus, police and news reports said.
Auburn Police Capt. Will Matthews told The Associated Press that police responded at 12:25 a.m. Sunday to a shots fired call the Tiger Lodge apartment complex, where the 18-year-old Mitchell was found. Mitchell was later pronounced dead at a hospital.
Matthews said an investigation is ongoing and no suspects have been taken into custody. No further details were released.
Mitchell redshirted this season for the Auburn Tigers out of nearby Opelika High School. He was expected to contend for a starting spot next season as a back and tight end.
Auburn athletic director Jay Jacobs later tweeted to the community: “The Auburn Family is grieving the loss of a teammate & friend Jakell Mitchell. We are praying for his family.” There were no other immediate statements by Auburn officials.
Mitchell missed his senior season at Opelika as he recovered from an ACL injury. He rushed for 392 yards and 17 touchdowns in 2013 as a junior.
Sunday’s shooting happened at the same apartment complex Desmonte Leonard killed three men at a party in the summer of 2012. The complex, located a few miles from campus, is popular with students and its name was changed following the 2012 shooting.
Jurors convicted Leonard of capital murder in the shooting deaths of former Auburn football players Ed Christian and Ladarious Phillips along with DeMario Pitts. Three other people were wounded.
Leonard’s attorney said the shooting stemmed from a fight and that Leonard fired in self-defense. Prosecutors argued that Leonard aimed at the victims and wasn’t involved in the initial fight.
Leonard will be sentenced on Jan. 20. The jury recommended life without parole, but the judge could still sentence him to death.