Nazir Williams, 19, and Felton Blackwell, 19, both defensive linemen on the UConn football team, were pulled over, searched and arrested for marijuana, alcohol and weapon possession in their vehicle around 10:30 p.m. near Blaze Pizza on Wednesday evening, according to the police.
Williams, who was driving the car, was arrested on three charges: possession of less than half an ounce of marijuana, weapons in a motor vehicle and possession of alcohol by a minor. The weapon was an unmarked BB gun that initially appeared to be a real gun, according to the report. The only bond was levied for the weapons charge with $2,000.
Williams was not charged for driving under the influence. The police report did not say he was breathalyzed.
Blackwell was charged with one count of weapons possession in a motor vehicle. He posted bond at $1,500. The charge was cited as weapon within reach of Blackwell.
UConn athletics released a statement Thursday morning regarding the arrest of the two student-athletes and announcing that the two have been immediately suspended. Prior to their suspension, Blackwell and Williams had not made an appearance for the Huskies during their time in Storrs.
“University of Connecticut Director of Athletics David Benedict and head football coach Bob Diaco are aware of the incident that took place Wednesday night and take these allegations very seriously. The safety of our student-athletes and University community is of the utmost concern for the UConn Division of Athletics," the statement said. "UConn football student-athletes Felton Blackwell and Nazir Williams have been immediately suspended. The UConn Division of Athletics will work with the University during the investigation process until the situation is resolved.”
According to Patrick Carignan, a fifth-semester communications and journalism double major who was standing by Blaze Pizza at the time, the car came around the corner and got pulled over. Carignan is also a writer for the Daily Campus news section.
“Then we saw them talking and then the next thing we know, we saw them getting searched,” Carignan said.
Officers pulled the car over initially for having one headlight. After observing the vehicle cross the double yellow, they pulled it over. The officers smelled marijuana coming from the car and Williams consented to a vehicle search, according to the report.
The body and trunk of the car were searched by the police.
The report listed that 4 g of marijuana, an open container of vodka and a loaded BB gun were recovered from the car. Both football players’ persons were also searched at the scene.
After being read their rights, Williams and Blackwell were both handcuffed and asked if they required medical assistance before being placed in the squad cars.
Blackwell had trouble getting into the police officer’s vehicle and a larger van was called to transport him to the police station.
Elizabeth Charash is a staff writer for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.