Tim Fuller-US PRESSWIRE

Ex-EMU Basketball Player James Still Sentenced to 15 Years For Felony Assault

Stemming from a crime in 2010, Still pleaded guilty to being involved in a brutal assault on a fellow student when he played basketball for Providence College. As a result he was suspended by the team on November 16, removed from the program a day later, and sentenced to four years and 11 suspended years prison on January 22.

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5 Total Updates since November 14, 2012
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James Still gets four years in jail, 11 suspended

Word just came out of Rhode Island that former Providence and EMU basketball player James Still will be going to jail for four years at least, with 11 more years suspended during probation, for that felony assault back in 2010, long before he joined EMU. And that's the end of that story.

It seems like a lifetime ago, yet it was just two months ago, that Still started two games for this team. Again, they had to know something about his pending legal issues. The timing's still weird for me. Maybe they unknowingly and inadvertently walked into a PR buzzsaw. Maybe they didn't think he would be indicted. Eagle Totem asserts that the athletic department will be able to speak on this issue after sentencing, so maybe they'll have an explanation for why they gave a potential felon, albeit one who earned his associate's degree, a college scholarship.

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EMU Dismisses James Still

And there it is. After being suspended over the weekend, Eastern Michigan removed forward James Still from its basketball program on Saturday and he is no longer on the roster. Maybe it's time to airbrush him out of the team picture, no?

There's not much else to say here. After the unexpected guilty plea, this was an obvious conclusion and if nothing else, Still will be exiting jail with an associate's degree, which is at least something.

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James Still suspended by Eastern Michigan

As expected.

EMU has a basketball game tonight and they really needed to rule on his status quickly, but for now he will not play against Eastern Illinois. And I highly doubt he'll play another minute for EMU.

Part of the statement made from Eastern Michigan's website:

The Eastern Michigan University Department of Intercollegiate Athletics was aware of the matter when Still was admitted to the University in the fall of 2012 based upon numerous positive recommendations and after he had earned an associate degree from Henry Ford Community College.

EMU continues to monitor the situation, but following University policy no further comment will be made on the ongoing legal process.

This answers my question of "Why was Still given a degree when these charges were ongoing?"

He may have turned a corner in his life (the community college degree is proof of that) but crimes are crimes and sometimes in life you need to face whatever consequences await you.

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Details on the James Still assault

I've culled through the original reports and pieced together more details about the assault that probably has James Still headed to prison for several years.

In April 2010, just days after getting into a fight with another Providence basketball player in a bar (keep in mind that Still was 19 at the time!), James Still and another Providence player, Johnnie Lacy, "severely beat up a fellow student while walking near campus in a random act of violence. The student suffered a broken nose, broken eye socket and brain trauma."

Other reports also describe it as "an unprovoked, random attack"; according to Providence spokesman Edward J. Caron, "There's no indication they even know each other...I think this young man was in the wrong place at the wrong time...The two individuals [Still and Lacy] indicated they were going to strike the very first victim that came around." The victim spent the next 2 1/2 days in the hospital with "a broken nose, a broken eye socket and several other serious injuries"

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EMU forward James Still pleads guilty to assault

Stemming from a crime in 2010, Still pleaded guilty to being involved in a brutal assault on a fellow student when he played basketball for Providence College.

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