Joe McKnight shooting: Sheriff denies reports from alleged eyewitnesses

Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand denied three alleged eye-witness accounts of Joe McKnight's shooting during a press conference on Friday, including a statement that McKnight issued an apology to shooting suspect Ronald Gasser.

"Mr. Gasser did not stand over Mr. McKnight and fire shots into him," he said. "The three casings were located in the vehicle. Mr. Gasser was in his vehicle when he fired three shots.

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Former NFL player Joe McKnight
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Former NFL player Joe McKnight

Running Back Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets follows the action against the Miami Dolphins when the Miami Dolphins host the New York Jets at Sun Life Stadium on September 23, 2012 in Miami Gardens, Florida.Jets beat the Dolphins, 23-20, in Overtime.

(Photo by Al Pereira/New York Jets/Getty Images)

Kansas City Chiefs running back Joe McKnight (22) scores a touchdown against the Miami Dolphins in the game at Sun Life Stadium. The Chiefs defeated the Dolphins 34-15.

(Brad Barr/USA TODAY Sports)

Runningback Joe McKnight #4 of the USC Trojans carries the ball against the UCLA Bruins during the college football game at the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum on December 1, 2007 in Los Angeles, California. The Trojans defeated the Bruins 24-7.

(Photo by Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

New York Jets Tim Tebow hands the ball off to Joe McKnight in the first quarter during their NFL football game against the Buffalo Bills in East Rutherford, New Jersey, September 9, 2012.

(REUTERS/Gary Hershorn)

USC's Joe McKnight (4), celebrates his second quarter touchdown with teammate Damian Williams against Notre Dame in Los Angeles November 29, 2008.

(REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets sits dejected after being defeated 24 to 19 by the Pittsburgh Steelers in the 2011 AFC Championship game at Heinz Field on January 23, 2011 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

(Photo by Al Bello/Getty Images)

Head Coach Pete Carroll of the USC Trojans congratulates his player Joe McKnight #4 after McKnight scored a touchdown in the third quarter during the Rose Bowl presented by Citi against the Illinois Fighting Illini at the Rose Bowl on January 1, 2008 in Pasadena, California.

(Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)

New York Jets running back Joe McKnight (25) leaves the field after an injury during the second half of their NFL football game against the Washington Redskins in Landover, Maryland, December 4, 2011.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst)

University of Southern California tailback Joe McKnight (4) scores a two-point conversion as David Ausberry (9) watches as McKnight is hit by Ohio State University defender Devon Torrence (R) during the fourth quarter of their NCAA football game in Columbus, Ohio, September 12, 2009.

(REUTERS/Matt Sullivan)

The USC Trojans' Joe McKnight (2nd L) runs between Penn State Nittany Lions' Lydell Sargeant (L), Anthony Scirrotto (2nd R) and Navorro Bowman (R) during the second quarter at the 95th Rose Bowl Game in Pasadena, California, January 1, 2009.

(REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson)

University of Southern California running back Joe McKnight scores a touchdown on a long run against Notre Dame in the fourth quarter of their NCAA football game in South Bend, Indiana, October 20, 2007.

(REUTERS/Frank Polich)

Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets looks on against the San Diego Chargers at MetLife Stadium on December 23, 2012 in East Rutherford, New Jersey. The Chragers defeated the Jets 27-17.

(Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)

USC's Joe McKnight walks off the field as fans celebrate the Oregon Ducks win in Eugene, Oregon Saturday.

(Photo by Wally Skalij/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images)

Running Back Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets watches the action against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on October 3, 2010 in Orchard Park, New York. Jets beat the bills, 38-14.

(Photo by Al Pereira/Getty Images)

Joe McKnight of USC reacts to returning a punt for 45 yards against the Arizona Wildcats at Memorial Coliseum.

(Photo by Charles Baus /Icon SMI/Icon Sport Media via Getty Images)

Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets returns a kick during an NFL game against the Buffalo Bills at Ralph Wilson Stadium on December 30, 2012 in Orchard Park, New York.

(Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images)

Running back Joe McKnight #22 of the Kansas City Chiefs celebrates with Junior Hemmingway #88 after scoring a third-quarter touchdown against the Miami Dolphins at Sun Life Stadium on September 21, 2014 in Miami Gardens, Florida.

(Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)

New York Jets running back Joe McKnight avoids a tackle from the Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Brandon Boykin (22) during the second quarter of their NFL preseason football game in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, August 30, 2012.

(REUTERS/Tim Shaffer)

Joe McKnight #25 of the New York Jets and Jeremy Kerley #11 walk to the field before the start of the Jets game against the Washington Redskins at FedExField on December 4, 2011 in Landover, Maryland.

(Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)


"There is no video that we've been able to recover at this point in time," he added. "We have no eyewitness account of an apology from Mr. McKnight to Mr. Gasser."

On Thursday, former NFL player McKnight was shot and killed in Louisiana in what authorities are calling a road rage incident. Glasser was identified as the suspect in the shooting. However, he was released from custody overnight without being charged, Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office spokesman Col. John Fortunato told ABC News. He said there was no reason to continue holding Gasser.

Read reactions to McKnight's sudden passing

Social media reaction to Joe McKnight's death
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Social media reaction to Joe McKnight's death
Rest in peace, Joe McKnight. Our thoughts and condolences are with his loved ones.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Joe McKnight and his family. This is a heartbreaking loss.
#FightOnForever Joe McKnight. The former USC running back was shot and killed today in Louisiana.
RIP my brother Joe McKnight this one hurts bad
Saddens me to hear the news about Joe McKnight. Our prayers go out to the McKnight family.
Deeply saddened by the loss of Joe McKnight. This is a terrible tragedy. Everyone loved Joe and we are going to really miss him.
Just got a message saying my former teammate Joe McKnight was killed today. This hurt to the heart. I can't stop crying. #RestInPeace
Can't believe my boy gone S.I.P Joe McKnight
This is just ridiculous smh it needs to stop! My condolences to Joe McKnight's family 😔😔🙏🏿
RIP Joe McKnight ... Prayers up 2 the family..🙏🏾🙏🏾🙏🏾
I am deeply saddened by the senseless passing of Joe McKnight today. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.
News about Joe Mcknight is devastating. Just at a loss of words!
R.I.P. Joe McKnight.. One of the reasons I wore number 4.. crazy world
Everybody in the world wanted to be @ReggieBush , us in New Orleans wanted to run the ball like Joe McKnight.
RIP to a SC legend ! Joe McKnight 🙏🏾
Rest In Peace to my bro Joe McKnight...this is unbelievable. Fly with the angels bro and rest in paradise. Heaven gained a real one today.
R.I.P Joe McKnight 👼🏾
Back in 2011, Joe told me he just loved when he heard the J-E-T-S chants. Said it gave him chills every time. 28-Years-Old. #RIP
I jus keep wishing this is a bad dream!!!
Sad, sad world... #RIP Joe McKnight
Rest in peace joe McKnight. Very sad to hear the news today. A great humble guy that was taken far to early. Condolences to the mcknights
Just woke up to hear some disturbing news. My condolences goes out to Joe McKnight. #RestInPeace #jetfamily
RIP Joe McKnight. I was able to watch my hometown phenom here at USC. Killed in our hometown of metro New Orleans. We are in crisis NOLA
My heart is heavy for Jets Nation tonight. Such a senseless act. RIP Joe McKnight. Once a Jet always a Jet 🏈

The Times-Picayune reported that a witness observed McKnight arguing with another man at an intersection in Terrytown. She said McKnight was trying to apologize when the man drew a gun and shot McKnight multiple times.

The shooter then allegedly stood over McKnight and said, "I told you, don't you f– with me" before firing again.

According to ABC News, Jefferson Parish Sheriff Newell Normand said at a press conference Thursday night that Gasser stayed at the scene of the shooting and "relinquished his weapon to our officers" when he was taken into custody.

After his release, various people on social media were outraged, asking how Gasser could've been released if he admitted to the crime and handed over his weapon to officers.

"In this state, there are some relative statutes that provide defenses to certain crimes. Officers have those same defenses," he told news outlets. "So when we shoot and kill somebody — it's a homicide — the question is, is it justified?"

In response to comments on social media, he said, "I've been already accused of dropping the ball and not doing this or doing that because we released Mr. Gasser last evening after we took his statement. As I said before: External influences will not motivate this office, one way or the other, as to how we are going to conduct this investigation strategically. And because there are witnesses that are out there, I can not go into this at this point in time."

He added, "Everyone wants to make this about race. This isn't about race. And I'll just throw this out, folks... the gentleman that raised Joe McKnight Jr. used to work for this office. So this office and many of the officers that are sitting over here, they close to his family."

On Thursday night, Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office spokesman Col. John Fortunato added that a grand jury or the district attorney will decide whether or not charges should be filed against Gasser.

"People can Monday morning quarterback what we've done — Mr. Gasser is not going anywhere, he has been completely cooperative with us," added Normand.

Read original story Joe McKnight Shooting: Sheriff Denies Reports From Alleged Eyewitnesses At TheWrap

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